Rainy Day Language Activities:
It doesn’t have to be all doom and gloom in January; rainy days provide the perfect opportunity for speech and language work when stuck inside!
Turn off the TV, put down the phone and get stuck in to some indoor activities which are perfect for this time of year.
Rainy Day Activity 1:
Role play is a brilliant way of encouraging language development, social skills and imagination. Get your child to pick the scenario and character they would like to be and follow their lead. Set the scene by using descriptive language and encourage your child to do the same e.g. “look I can see a princess with long brown hair standing in front of the castle, what can you see?’’. Ask prompting questions such as ‘’what happened? Who can you see? How do they feel? What will happen next?’’. Use any props you may have available to help your child use their imagination and visual what is happening. Hours of entertainment guaranteed!
Rainy Day Activity 2:
Everybody loves a good nursery rhyme. The benefits of nursery rhymes are endless. They encourage memory development, turn-taking and pre-literacy skills to name but a few. Sing nursery rhymes in different voices e.g. robot voice, snail voice (slow), lightning voice (fast), loud voice and quiet voice. Mix things up by singing every second line of the rhyme with your child or sing the wrong words and have your child correct you. Use toy musical instruments and clapping out different beats to encourage development of rhyme and rhythm awareness.
Rainy Day Activity 3:
Simon says is a classic game but a brilliant activity for developing receptive language abilities. It allows children to develop listening and attention skills, follow different commands and increases their awareness of concepts. It can be used to introduce loads of different vocabulary such as colours, body parts etc. As well as more complex concepts such as before/after, in front/behind etc. For example ‘’Simon says touch your toes before you stand behind the red chair’’. It also allows for development of expressive language abilities if you get your child to take charge and tell you what Simon says!
Rainy Day Activity 4:
Reading books with your child is so important for language development.
‘’The more you read, the more you know, the more you learn, the more places you will go!’’ – Dr. Seuss.
Book reading is a great opportunity to practice balancing questions and comments. For example;
Parent: What can you see?
Child: I see a dog
Parent: I see a dog too. It is a small brown dog. The dog is barking at the cat. Our dog is called Sam.
This allows you to model appropriate language for your child by expanding on what they say. Make sure to follow your child’s lead and talk about what they are interested in.
Younger children may be more engaged in books with sounds, touch and feel books and bath books, all of which are great for language development. Remember, it’s never too early to start with books!
Rainy Day Activity 5:
Find an old shoe box and cover it in wrapping paper. Inside, place different objects of different texture, sizes and colours e.g. stones, tinfoil, dry pasta, cotton wool, tennis ball etc. Sing the feely box song with your child;
‘’Magic box, what’s inside,
what are you trying to hide!’’
Have your child describe the object they pull out e.g. ‘’I found a stone. It is white. It is big and heavy. It feels smooth!’’. This is a great activity for encouraging descriptive language.