Do you work with preschool-aged kids in language intervention? Discover must-have toys and activities to use in speech therapy!
When working with younger children, especially those in preschool or early intervention, it’s important that therapy is engaging and fun. Children are much more willing to engage and able to learn when they like you and want to interact with you. Play is also a great way to work on functional, meaningful language. This is oftentimes why therapy from the outside looks like play. Really it’s very structured, intentional play!
I compiled a list of my must-have, go-to resources for this preschool speech therapy broken into 5 categories:
FAVORITE PRETEND PLAY PRESCHOOL TOYS
FARM SET: A toy farm is one of my favorite therapy toys because it is versatile and engaging. You can read all about toy farms and the many language opportunities and ways to use them in this post.
THE BEST BASIC PRESCHOOL TOYS
BALLS: Using balls is a great way to incorporate movement into therapy. Work on early language and social skills: turn-taking, joint attention, requesting, verbs, and more.
CARS: Cars are open-ended and a favorite for many kids. Collect various colors and sizes to work on basic concepts and descriptors.
BUBBLES: Bubbles are irresistible. Use them to work on joint attention, turn-taking, vocabulary, and more!
POTATO HEAD: Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head are great for turn-taking, play skills, body parts, descriptors, and many more language skills.
SENSORY BINS AND BOTTLES: Sensory bins are engaging and provide hands-on fun. They easily make a boring activity fun with minimal preparation and are inexpensive to make. You can read all about the benefits of sensory bins and what you can use them for in this post. A free sensory bin activity is included at the end!
PLAYDOUGH: Playdough is a popular activity among a wide age group. It is fun and engaging and you can easily target many speech and language goals!
PRESCHOOL SPEECH THERAPY GAMES
POP THE PIG: Roll the die, feed the pig, and watch as he gets bigger and bigger until he pops! This is a favorite of preschoolers! It’s a great motivator while targeting other skills or to use for core vocabulary and play skills.
POP-UP PIRATE: Insert the swords into the barrel – one slot will make the pirate pop out of the barrel! This is a fun motivator, you can also use it for core vocabulary (more, go, me, my turn), colors, and turn-taking.
TYPES OF PRESCHOOL BOOKS
BOARD BOOKS: An assorted collection of books is always a good idea! Some favorites for preschool include Sandra Boynton books and Eric Carle books.
LIFT-THE-FLAP BOOKS: These are interactive and keep kids engaged. Two favorites are “Dear Zoo” and “Where’s Spot?”
TOUCH-AND-FEEL BOOKS: These are also interactive and work great for holding the attention of younger children. I recommend getting books that have silicone touchable components (opposed to fabric) for easier cleaning.
INTERACTIVE BOOKS: Interactive books are a favorite and staple of mine! The interactive component of these books keep minds engaged and hands busy. Kids love to move the pieces and be in control of the activity – it feels more like a game than work! You can get a lot of language and can work on tons of skills from just a small, compact book! Lastly, and probably my favorite aspect, you can target many goals! Download this free one!
What else would you add for preschool speech therapy must-haves?
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