Ideas to support summer speech development

May is better speech and hearing month! Here are some ideas to help your child practice his/her articulation and language skills over the summer.

  1. Read books aloud together
  • Listen for your child’s target sound and have him/her repeat words
  • Ask who, what, where, how, and why questions about the story
  • Ask your child to re-tell the story chapter focusing on event sequencing, main idea, and important details
  • Pick an object/idea from the story to describe (category, function, additional attributes, parts, location, materials, etc.
  1. Drawing pictures together
  • Have your child follow verbal directions using concepts like: first, before, big, small, purple, beside, around, middle, above, several, many, etc. (e.g. first draw a big blue house in the middle of the page, then draw a little yellow flower next to the house)
  • Look for objects within the picture with targeted speech sounds and repeat his/her words
  1. Field trip
  • Draw a map of your neighborhood/town and go on a “field trip”
  • Have your child sequence directions to get from one place to another
  • Follow his/her directions (even if they are incorrect) and see if your child can get to the correct place (this targets problem solving, directional skills, grammar, and descriptive skills)
  • Also have your child practice his/her targeted speech sounds when giving directions (if applicable)
  1. Cooking together
  • Choose a fun recipe to make with your child
  • Decide what supplies are needed, what steps need to be completed, and the order of steps
  • Have your child re-tell the cooking sequence focusing on proper sequence of events, grammar, and targeted speech sounds
  1. Vacation postcard
  • If you go on vacation this summer have your child fill out a postcard (highlighting some of the most important things they did/activities they liked the most)
  • You can do this if you stay home too (have them make your own postcard and write their favorite parts of the summer)
  • You can mail them off to a friend or family member for a fun surprise!
  • Focus on targeted speech sounds, sequencing, grammar, descriptive words, etc.

Nikki Kirchoff, MA, CCC-SLP

2 Responses to “Ideas to support summer speech development”

  1. Thanks for telling me that letting my daughter describe a character from a book she just read is a great way to improve her speech and language skills. I noticed that she doesn’t talk a lot and stammers often, so I guess she’s a little behind her peers. It might also be a good idea to explore our therapy options and see if this is our best choice.

  2. It’s great that you talked about how reading helps your kid improves their speech skills. A few days ago, I met with my sister for a coffee, and she mentioned she’s worried about her daughter’s speech skills. She said she noticed her daughter having trouble communicating, and she doesn’t know what to do. I believe that this article could help my sister out, so I’ll be sure to share it. Thanks for the tips about how to help your child with their speech development.

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