Spring is here, and Easter is just around the corner. If you’ve got a child working on growing their speech and language skills, we’ve got some fun seasonal activities to try at home. We promise there’s something here your child will love, so hop to it!
Read spring- and Easter-themed books
Reading is an incredible way for your child to learn new vocabulary words. Books also help children learn how to structure sentences, follow themes, and understand emotions. Plus, if you read together, they’re getting bonding time with you!
As you read with your younger child, point to different items in the pictures and have them label what they see or tell you a short phrase or sentence about it.
For older children, ask them, “What do you think will happen next?” or “Why do you think the character did that?” Or, when the story is done, ask them to summarize what happened in the book.
Here are some seasonal books to consider adding to your library:
Dye or paint Easter eggs
If you celebrate Easter, coloring Easter eggs is one tradition you can’t leave off the list. Let your child pick out the colors to dye or paint the eggs. Gather your supplies, then get to work!
As you create your eggs together, practice the different action words associated with this activity. Learning new action words helps children grow their vocabulary and get better at conveying different concepts.
For early talkers, teach these words as you complete the related tasks, and see if they will imitate you:
Cook a weekend brunch together
Cooking with your child is a tasty way to practice speech and language skills at home. And what better meal to try than an Easter or weekend brunch? Choose a dish or two that are easy for your kiddo to help with. Maybe you’ll assemble a fruit salad, bake muffins, or make pancakes.
There are lots of speech skills you can target while cooking and baking together. One idea is to practice the use of spatial concepts. You could have your child explain that they need to take the eggs out of the fridge or place the spoon in the bowl. For any spatial concepts like these that apply to your tasks, have your child name them. If they aren’t sure, spend some time teaching them these concepts.
You can also practice descriptive words with your child while you prepare the food. Ask them to name how the batter for the waffles feels–maybe it’s sticky and wet.
Of course, the most satisfying speech exercise is describing how the food tastes once you’re all done. Sit back and enjoy your hard work by sampling each item. Your little one can describe each food–maybe the bacon is salty and the muffins are sweet. This is one activity the two of you won’t mind trying out. (Although we make no promises about the cleanup required afterward!)
Make some springtime crafts
Craft projects are a great way to teach your child to follow simple or multistep directions. To do this, pick out a craft activity to try with your little one. Give your child simple one-step directions to follow, such as, “Put the glue on the paper,” or “Dip the paintbrush in the water.” As your child improves with following these simple directions, move on to two- and three-step directions.
When it comes to arts and crafts, there’s no need to be Picasso or invest in fancy supplies. Here are some simple–and adorable–Easter and springtime craft ideas you can try with your child today.
Practice Easter-themed and springtime words
If your little one is just learning to talk or use phrases, expand their vocabulary with seasonal and holiday words. You can do this by looking at pictures, playing with related toys, walking outside, or reading books together that use these words. Here are a few to focus on:
Speech-themed Easter egg hunt
You can’t have Easter without an Easter egg hunt! If you have a child who’s working on specific speech sounds, fill plastic eggs with small pieces of paper listing a target word. Let’s say your child is practicing their /s/ sound. You could place words like sun, sock, and soap in the eggs.
Hide the eggs for your child to find. When they do, they should practice the word inside the egg. You can do this as your child finds each egg or at the very end of the hunt.
To make it even more fun, be sure to hide some “prize” eggs, too, with candy or another small treat inside. This will keep the game extra motivating!
Enjoy springtime together outside
It doesn’t get much better than spending time as a family outside. And as spring warms up, there are plenty of opportunities to practice speech and language outdoors.
One easy idea is using sidewalk chalk to practice letter and sound recognition. You and your child can write the alphabet on the sidewalk, naming each letter and the associated sounds together. Get creative and draw some items that start with those sounds, too.
Here’s another idea: Take turns describing and guessing. Did you know that the ability to describe an item, or to identify an item based on a description given, shows growing language abilities?
To do this with sidewalk chalk, give your child a hint of what you’re going to draw. Maybe you tell them, “I’m thinking of something that has two long ears. It hops, and it brings Easter eggs. What could this be?” Hopefully your child tells you this is the Easter Bunny! Then spend some time drawing it. You can pick more challenging items to describe and guess as your child masters the easier ones. The great thing about speech practice is that you can do it just about anywhere, during any activity. And practicing with seasonal activities just makes it that much more fun! You’ll be growing your child’s speech and language abilities and making memories together.