Home “Play” for Speech 2.0

Our Speech Pathologist Ms. Ann was kind enough to join our 2 & Under program virtually this past Saturday and she shared a lot of great ideas for families to continue working on speech while at home.  A few weeks ago we shared a few blogs with speech tips and tricks. Some of those are shared below but this 2.0 version has additional activities.

Mirror Play

I have mentioned playing with facial expressions in the mirror at toothbrush time.  Keep this up and here are some things to expand in the mirror/face play.

  1. Use shaving cream to draw on the mirror on your faces! On the mirror give yourself a beard/mustache/crazy hair.  This will hopefully encourage talking about facial features and try to get him/her to name them, and of course giggles!  This is also a good fine motor activity if you are daring enough to let him/her then finger-paint in the shaving cream on the mirror.
  2. Make animal masks out of paper plates. I have included links for templates.  Then put on the masks while looking in the mirror and model/encourage the animal sound!

Links to printable masks:





Cars, Trucks, Boats and Planes—And Don’t Forget a Bus!

  1. Small vehicles are great for getting kids talking, taking turns and building their knowledge of action words like vroom vroom and beep beep.
  2. Announce “ready, steady—go” before driving over little body parts.
  3. We’ve heard from many out there in the field that children often say the word “bus” before car, so if you can find a bus, it’s sure to be a favorite.


Wind Up for Fun

  1. A walking robot, monkey with cymbals, hopping frog—there are so many fun wind-up toys out there to choose from.
  2. Practice requesting words like “more” and “please.” These little movers are a great way to introduce and reinforce “go” with the phrase “ready, set….go!”
  3. You may also work on concepts like “down” by winding one up and asking the child, “Where should I put this?”


Books and Songs

All books are wonderful. But especially ones that have a lot of repetition and encourage noise-making.  Here are some suggestions:

  1. Books of Songs like Old Mac Donald, Head/Shoulders/Knees/Toes, Wheels on the Bus, etc
  2. Moo Ba La La La – Sandra Boynton (and almost any of her books)
  3. Any of the Brown Bear, Brown Bear books
  4. Animal Sound Books – I love Eric Carle Around the Farm, and Hear Bear Roar
  5. You can always add your own sound effects to a favorite story!


Bath time

  1. Following directions: “Give me your duck.”
  2. Identifying toys: “Which one is the duck?” when paired with another toy.
  3. Identifying body parts: “Touch your nose.”
  4. Naming toys: “What is this called?”
  5. Modeling sounds: Splash! Pshhh, pop pop pop!
  6. Modeling words: (nouns) tub, water, bubbles, soap, towel, shampoo, body parts, various toys; (verbs) wash, dry, pour, pop, blow, brush; (core words*) in, out, all done, all gone, more, want, up, down
  7. Expand single words into phrases: Time for bath. Take a bath. Fill it up. Wash face. In cup. Water out. Water on. All done. Get out. Bye bye water. Toys in.
  8. Most children love the bath. They are not only contained in the tub, which will improve attention skills but they can use a variety of toys and containers to stimulate language. Bubbles, bath toys, bath colors, and bath fizz balls are all special items only for bath time. They serve as great reinforcements to make bath time special


Meal Time

  1. Following directions: “Get a cup.”
  2. Identifying items: “Which one is the spoon?” when paired with another utensil. Naming toys: “What is this called?”
  3. Modeling sounds: Yumm! MMM! BRR cold! HHHH hot!
  4. Modeling words: (nouns) spoon, fork, cup, plate, bowl, fridge, bottle, juice, milk, water, various food names, napkin; (verbs) sit, pour, stir, clean, eat, drink, bite, cut, wash, blow; (core words*) in, out, all done, all gone, more, want, mama, up, down
  5. Expand single words into phrases: Time to eat. Wash hands. Cold juice. More please. In the sink. Sit down. Pour it. All done. Want more? My spoon, Juice in. My cup. Wipe hands.
  1. Mealtime is a great time for requesting food items. Wait for your child to request his favorite snack by giving him just one small piece or tempting him by placing the food item out of reach


Swing Time

  1. If you have a swing set, use these words to prompt them to finish the phrase. Before sliding down, hold them and say “ready, set, go” several turns, then just say the “ready, set” and try to get them to say go. Once they do that, hopefully all you have to say is “ready” and they will finish the phrase!
  2. With the swing, “ready, set, go” and swing a few times, stop them and do it again using the same pattern as describes above.
  3. You can also do swinging with single word imitation. For example, take a word or sound they are saying and while standing in front of them, pull forward the swing and say the word, like “mommy” or “bububu” and let go. Let them swing once or twice, and catch them, then say “mommy” and let go. Do this a few times until they get the idea and start saying the word with you. Start adding new words or sounds to imitate. Don’t get frustrated just try to have fun. Lots of smiles and positive reinforcement.


Sidewalk Chalk

Draw the things that make noise! Cars (one can go beep, one can honk), animals and faces (smile = yay, mad face = grrr, sad face = boo hoo).  Then jump and run around and when you stop on one make that noise encouraging them to do so as well. This works well with a treat reinforce – one tiny snack (fruit snack, goldfish, m&m) each time they make the sound.



  1. Pop! Blow! Woosh!  More! Bubble! Say these!!!
  2. Oral motor on blowing them on their own – test different wands and such

Try counting them as the float. Describe them as “big” or “little”, blow “fast” and “slow”.


Thank you Ann for all these great ways to incorporate speech into daily play and activities at home.

If you have any questions for Ann she can be reached at acobb@gigisplayhouse.org. 

Leave a Comment