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Monthly Archives: November 2012

Educational Holiday Gifts

It’s holiday time and with so many options out there, buying the perfect gift for the children in your life can be daunting.  Why not make it an educational, language enhancing gift?

Here are some of my my favorite educational holiday gifts……

Board Games:

These games are fun and exciting and can help with vocabulary and language development without your child even knowing it.  Add carrier phrases such as “I picked (card item)” or “Does your person have (attribute)” to various games to work on expanding utterances and question forms.

  • Blurt
  • Boggle and Boggle Jr.
  • Funny Bunny
  • Guess Who
  • Guess Where
  • Memory
  • Scattergories
  • Sequence for Kids


Use these toys to engage in imaginative play and build vocabulary.  The more fun you have, the more your child will get out of these experiences!

  • Fischer Price Little People Toys (van, bus, car, people, etc.)
  • Mr. Potato Head
  • Just Like Home Brand (food, kitchen, cash register, etc.)
  • Puzzles
  • Fischer-Price Laugh and Learn Puppy


  • LeapFrog devices
  • VTech devices

This is only a start–there are many fun and wonderful educational holiday gifts out there.

I hope you have a fantastic holiday season. 

Happy shopping!

Everyday Activities to Help Develop your Child’s Language Skills

Take advantage of language opportunities in everyday activities.

Talk about EVERYTHING you are doing, what you see, and where you are going.

*Use snack and meal times to increase vocabulary

  • talk about how things taste, feel and look.
  • encourage your child to request various food items (start by offering them two choices)
  • bake cookies together and follow a recipe making sure to emphasize sequential vocabulary (first, second, third)

*Read to your child daily– stories, poems, nursery rhymes, etc.

  • talk about the stories while you are reading
  • ask your child to predict what happens next.
  • ask follow-up questions (re-cap information after every page or two)
  • practice summarizing or re-telling what happened in the story using specific vocabulary (first, beginning, second, middle, then, next, last)
  • model these responses to provide an example of what this would look/sound like

*Help your child practice thinking in categories by dividing pictures and objects into  groups

  • begin at a very basic level, (i.e., sorting pictures into categories of “things I like” and “things I don’t like”)
  • move onto colors, shapes, functions, beginning and ending letter sounds…the possibilities are endless

*Use fun activities and games to teach vocabulary and language skills

  • play games involving “spatial terms” (i.e., under, in front of, etc.)
  • play games that focus on following directions (i.e., “Simon Says”)
  • play games that encourage descriptive language skills (i.e., “I Spy”)
  • engage in imaginative play with your child–follow their lead and see where it takes you

**Just Remember**Talk about EVERYTHING: recap your day, your grocery store experience, your trip to the zoo…ANYTHING!

Make sure your child knows that you want to hear what they have to say!


Categories : Sam's Blog, Tips

Tips for Talking with your Disfluent Child

Tips for talking with your disfluent child. Stuttering is a speech/language impairment characterized by disruptions in the forward flow of speech (or “speech disfluencies”). These can look like repetitions of whole words or parts of words, prolongations of sounds, or complete blockages of sound.

Here are some tips for talking with your disfluent child

  1. Talk to your child slowly and clearly
  2. Avoid comments like “talk slower”, “slow down”, “think about what you are trying to say” and “take a deep breath”
  3. Avoid drawing attention to the disfluent moments (don’t hold the child’s face or tell them to “look at me”)
  4. Provide positive verbal praise for talking (i.e., “you are a good talker” or “I like the way you said that”)
  5. Don’t correct or interrupt him when he or she is talking
  6. Listen patiently until the child is finished speaking *maintain consistent and appropriate eye contact
  7. Respond the same to disfluent speech as you would to fluent speech
  8. Delay your responses to allow for more pauses
  9. Reduce the number of questions you ask your child *Instead of asking questions comment on what your child has said
  10. Don’t make your child practice saying certain words or sounds


Categories : Sam's Blog, Tips
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