5 Ways to Encourage Language Development During the Holidays

November 28, 2017

5 Ways to Encourage Language Development During the Holidays

The holidays are a great time to be talking to your children and helping them build their language skills. Luckily, there are some simple ways to encourage learning even when you are busy with family events, decorating, and holiday shopping!

  1. Use the tree to talk about spatial concepts. You can talk about where the lights, presents, ornaments, and so forth are (for example, on the tree, under the tree, on top of the tree).
  2. Teach your child to explain and follow directions by wrapping presents. First, explain the steps it takes to wrap a present while your child watches (for example, lay the paper down flat, measure how much you need, cut the paper, place the present on the paper, fold up each side, tape it, and put a bow on top). Then, have your child wrap one while you give step-by-step directions. Last, have your child explain the steps to you while you wrap a present.
  3. Learn colors from Christmas lights. Talk about the colors of the lights while out and about. You could play “find the color” while walking around the neighborhood.
  4. Read holiday stories. While reading stories with your little ones, ask open-ended questions about each page. This will encourage them to talk more than if you only ask yes-no questions. A great way to do that is to say, “tell me about the picture” instead of “what’s this?”
  5. Bake cookies. There’s no better place to talk than while baking treats, right? Baking is a great way to teach vocabulary and following directions. You can talk about each activity you are doing (for example, stirring, rolling, mixing, kneading, baking, cleaning, scooping). You can also teach how to read recipes and that there are ingredients, directions, temperature, and so forth.

There are many ways to promote language, no matter what time of the year it is. Keep in mind that the more you talk about what you are doing, even if the tasks seem simple, the better for a child’s language development!

Until next time,


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