5 Fun Summer Activities to Encourage Speech and Language

summer activities for speech and language

Children and adults alike look forward to summertime and the joy of a little extra time to spend with your kids. While school is out, you don’t have to search hard for ways to help your children continue learning. See some suggestions below for summertime activities to encourage speech and language skills. You’ll be surprised how so many skills can be targeted during common summertime routines.

Water Table: Water tables can be a life-saver in the summertime! Children love to play with water, and adults can use it as an opportunity to model language. With younger kids, you can model a variety of concepts during play including in/out, full/empty, wet/dry. You can also focus on action words like pour, splash, swim, dive, jump. Vary your intonation and facial expressions to engage your child in play.

Picnic: Planning for and having a picnic can be a great summer activity for the whole family. Use repetitive language while packing (e.g., sandwich in, grapes in, napkins in, etc). Challenge your child to follow 1-2 step directions while packing up. Work on category labeling and help your child brainstorm items that belong in each category (e.g., fruit, dessert, utensils).

Walk on the Beach: If you’re lucky enough to have a beach by you, spending some time there can be a great opportunity to encourage speech and language skills. With older kids, you can play a game of “I Spy” or the “Five Senses” game. Pick a sense and then ask your child, “What do you see/hear/smell/feel/taste?” Discuss the texture of the sand, seaweed or shells, and discuss the temperature of the sand vs. water. You can write messages in the sand while practicing letter/sound correspondence and articulation of tricky sounds. 

Sprinklers: Sprinkler play can really be a great opportunity to engage even the quietest child. Work on filling in the blank with common phrases such as “ready, set, go”. You can provide the beginning and see if your child will fill in the blank. If they don’t, you can complete the phrase with “go” using an exaggerated intonation. Other suggested phrases include: “1, 2, 3 go”, “up, up, up, down”, “go, go, go, stop”. Work on turn-taking by taking turns running through the sprinkler with your child. Kids love to see their grown-ups wet!

Bubbles: Let’s face it, bubbles are fun for everyone, grown-ups included! For preverbal children, you can work on modeling (or helping them produce) the signs for “more”, “bubble”, “up” or “go”. You can learn new signs on a variety of websites, but my favorite is aslpro.com. You can model various concept words while playing with bubbles including open/close (the container), up/down, big/little. 

The activities listed above are only a few examples of summer activities that help develop a child’s language skills. Explore your child’s interests and don’t forget to have fun this summer!

Written by Sara Shapiro, M.A., CCC-SLP

Discover how our autism treatment services can help you

Discover how our autism treatment services can help you

Get Social With Us

Related Posts