How to Use Games and Daily Activities
for Speech and Language
Here are some ideas on how to use games and everyday activities to practice and enrich speech and language. You may have some of the games mentioned. If you don't and are having trouble thinking of how to adapt your favorite games to speech, send me an email email@example.com and I will do my best to help you.
1. GUESS WHO? - This is a great game for asking and answering questions. Remember that you need to use complete sentences to practice good language skills. Ask questions like: Is your person a girl? Does your person have a white beard? Does your character wear glasses? Answer questions like: Yes, my person is a girl. No, my person does not have a white beard. Yes, my character wears glasses. If you are working on your speech sounds, make sure that you are using your good sounds when asking or answering.
2. GO FISH - You may not have the "speech version" cards but you can use ANY cards to play as long as you ask and answer questions with complete question and sentence form. If you are working on speech sounds, make sure you use your sounds also. Ask questions like: "Do you have any 7's?" No, I do not have any 7's. Go Fish!" or "Do you have any Kings?" "Yes, I do have a King."
3. MEMORY GAME - There are many versions of the Memory Game. You can use any version you have. When you turn over a card, name the picture on the card. If you get a match, make up a complete sentence about the picture you matched. (Say to your child, "Tell me something about ____.") When counting your matches at the end of the game, count 1 match-2 matches-3 matches, etc. Use the /es/ ending for more than one match. For older players and more language practice, you can make up a sentence EACH time you turn over a card. If you are working on your speech sounds, make sure you use your good sounds.
4. POP THE PIG - My speech friends seem to love this game. It is very simple so we have to add more to it for speech. Don't just take turns. Talk through each turn. Name the color on the die. Name the number on the bottom of the hamburger. Count out loud when pushing the Piggy's chef's hat as it clicks. (Ask questions and comments like: "Whose turn is it?" "It's my turn." "Is it your turn?") Even the older kids like this game. They can do all the above but maybe they can say # of words on the bottom of the hamburger beginning with their sound, for example. If you are working on speech sounds, make sure you use them.
5. HEDBANZ - This is a fun game for older kids. It is great for asking and answering questions with correct question form and complete sentences. As always, if you are working on speech sounds, make sure you use them when you play.
READ BOOKS TOGETHER
Read together. To work on speech sounds, have your child pick out the words with their sound. Say the word and have them repeat. Read the sentence in the book and have your child say it after you.
Cooking together is great for so many speech skills! Telling what you will need as far as ingredients/utensils. Sequencing: what do you do 1st, next, last. Describe the steps and directions. Use describing words: salty, sweet, bitter, etc. You can use math for measurements and how many servings, etc. Just keep the conversation going. Talk through all you are doing. Ask questions to engage your child even more. Stay away from yes or no questions.
ART & CRAFTS
If you like to do crafts and you like to read, this is for you! Make an Animal DIY Bookmark. Use your good speech and language skills to tell what materials you need, the steps or directions and use describing words to tell about the animal you choose for your bookmark. You can do this with any art or craft activity. Here is the link for you Animal Bookmark -
You can turn on closed-captioning for something novel so your child can read and hear what is being said. You can watch your favorite TV show together. Watch from one commercial to the next then ask your child questions about what happened. Remember the WH questions - WHO, WHAT, WHEN, WHERE, WHY and HOW. Ask your child to predict what could come next. Have your child retell the story in his or her own words.
Let me know what you are doing to work on your child's speech in games or everyday activities. We can even post some of your ideas here for others to use.