Fun Movement Activities for Speech Development

Fun Movement Activities for Speech Development

Fun Movement Activities for Speech Development

Speech development activities, Motor movements including moving, crawling, sitting, standing are crucial parts of a child’s development. These skills help a child to explore his environment. This variety of movements in a child’s environment will help to grow.  

American Academy of Pediatrics

The American Academy of Pediatrics, 2007, explains, play is the “work of children”. As play children learn most of the information through play. These play help to discover their interests. Play Influence positively to acquire cognitive, motor, speech, language, and social-emotional skills. Speech and language development is an important part of a child’s overall development. As a parent, there are many fun and creative activities you can do with your child to encourage speech and language development. Here are some Fun Activities To Encourage Speech-Language Development In Children.

Motor movements in play help speech development:

Engaging children in everyday play and games involving a lot of movement will help them to use speech and language skills in an interactive and fun way.  Also, a child can learn new words and practice other language skills have learned.  A child plays these motor movement games with a communication partner or peer group, in an interactive way. Therefore, these motor movements help in better social interactions. speech development activities

Fun Motor Activities:

Below given fun Activities are according to different age groups. However, Most of the activities suit all the age groups. We can select fun activities depending on the child’s interests,  materials available, and so on.  These games are played in day to day interactions and also in speech therapy sessions. 

  1. Young Babies (0-1 year)
  2. Toddlers (1-3 years)
  3. Preschoolers (3-5 years)

Fun activities in young Babies (0-1 year)

Research has shown that motor development and speech development are dependent on each other. In the initial months of life,  more quick and jerky movements will be seen. later, these movements will turn to smooth and intentional physical movements.  In this stage of development pre-linguistic behaviors (PLB) will develop.

Fun activities in young Babies

These include eye contact, joint attention (sharing an object/activity),  facial expression, and simple gestures. These skills are an important building block for speech development. Involving babies in motor movements helps to develop PLB skills. speech development activities

Movement Games to play:

  • Eye-tracking activity:  Eye-tracking activity is to share between an adult and a child. The adult moves a toy while the child looks at that toy.  For example, Pretending a  toy car moving on the road or pretending to take the toy dog for a walk, etc
  • Building blocks- Blocks can be in stocking, building, and balancing. 
  • Building blocks- Use Blocks in stocking, building, and balancing are fun. 
  • Sort shapes, colors.
  • Bubbles: Children like to watch the bubbles floating and their movements.
  • Peek a boo: most children enjoy playing peek a boo. Include a lot of variety in playing peek a boo. Using a blanket, hiding behind the pillow, etc will attract child eye contact and attention.
  • Floortime with child- This set of free play with babies including rocking and rolling helps in developing PLBs and also built a positive relationship with the communicator partner.
  • Rhymes and actions: Singing rhymes with hand gestures, facial expressions, and voice fluctuations attracts the child’s attention.
  • Sibling play-movements and games with a sibling is always a great idea for social interactions.
  • Cause and effect games: A child’s action leads to changes in his/her environment. These activities develop a natural curiosity in the child.  Games like building a tower and knocking it down with a ball, wind up toys are useful to get child attention.

joker toy

P.C. Wikipedia

2.  Fun activities in toddlers (1-3 years)

As the child is growing, his/her experience with the environment is increasing, resulting in more and more accurate development. In toddlers, motor skills including standing, walking, climbing up/down the stairs, running, and jumping are developed strongly.

Fun activities in toddlers

Play with these activities are useful, because, these will help in speech and language skills including pointing skills, following simple instructions, learning names of different things and people around him/her, learning simple sentences, asking questions, and so on. speech development activities

Motor Games to play:

  • Run and chase games – like tag
  • Motor activities involving copying and imitation skills: Imitating different walking styles of different animals.
  • Copying a leader’s actions-child has to copy an adult’s spontaneous movements like hands up, moving/ leaning forward, etc.
  • Imitating nursery and action rhymes and singing along.
  • Play with the Ball- Rolling, kicking, throwing at the targets like throw in the basket, throw at the wall, throw at a distance, etc, catching a ball with the partner or on own. Using a ball to knock down a wooden tower. speech development activities
  • Playground- using slide, swing, merry-go-round, see-saw are the best movement activities that all the children love.
  • Building Dens, house, pet house with wooden blocks, pillows, cardboard boxes, chairs, etc
  • Walking activities such as walking up and down a stair, walking on different textures such as lawn, carpet, sand, floor, etc.
  • Jumping activities such as jumping on targets like different shapes/colors, jump to catch a bubble, or an object in the air, jumping from a comfortable height like a chair/bench, and landing safely.
  • Balancing activities such as walking in a straight line/balancing on a plank of wood or logs. And Balancing bikes.
  • Moving and acting to rhymes, stories, and rhythms. Read a story or sing a rhyme and the child has to perform the actions according to the words.

3.  Fun activities in Preschoolers (3-5 years)

In this age group,  children will get good control over motor and language skills. The gross motor skills including kicking a large ball, throwing the ball, play catch with a large ball, peddling a tricycle, and swinging, etc will be mastered.

Fun activities in Preschoolers

Speech skills seen during these activities are learning a variety of vocabulary, following multiple instructions, conversation skills including commenting, questioning, reporting, group conversations, etc.

Movement Games to play:

  • Physical movement games including rule-based games, interactive games in small groups, and challenging activities can be included.
  • The Colour-corner game: each corner in the room will be associated with individual color when the random color is called out, the child will run and matches with a particular corner.
  • Traffic light game: Here, the child has to do a specific action to that particular color. When ‘green’ is called out, the child starts running. When ‘’yellow’ is called out the child will walk on tiptoe, and when ‘red’ is called out, the child stops the action. (The actions to the colors can be changed to challenge the child)
  • Hide and seek: This game involves rules where one child searches the other children who are hiding.
  • Use Movement activities with line markings- activities such as hopscotch. Jumping on different colors, shapes, and numbers when they hear that particular item, balancing on the lines, etc.
  • Exploring open space activity- activities like a treasure hunt, obstacle race, crawl through the tunnels, moving around the obstacles in reverse directions are some examples.
  • Roleplay: using out due materials in the form of play items, a backyard garden as the farm, making a hen coop with a box in the garden, Theme-based games such as vegetable market, doctors clinic, etc attract a lot of movements from a child during the play.
  • Read the story and enact it dramatically being the character. 
  • Music and movement- singing rhymes and dancing to songs. 
  • Bouncing and jumping activities: Trampoline, skipping ropes, passing the small hurdles and touch the finish line, etc

Including these gross motor, activities will help in speech and language skills. For more ideas, please contact your speech therapist.

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