Turkey Talk: Thanksgiving Language Boost for Little Ones

Hello, wonderful parents navigating the world of toddlerhood! If you have a little one – Thanksgiving can be a golden opportunity to sprinkle some extra language magic into your holiday celebrations. Here are some simple and enjoyable ideas tailored for your little one with language delays.

1. Slow and Steady Storytime: 

Run to the library and find picture books with vibrant illustrations and simple narratives. Take your time as you read, pausing to point at pictures and repeating key words. Sometimes it’s fun to simply talk about pictures rather than reading each word. This slow and steady approach not only supports comprehension but also gives your little one extra time to absorb and process the language.

2. Sensory Speech Play:

Create a sensory bin filled with various textures like rice, beans, or soft fabric. As your little one explores, use this time to introduce new words associated with touch and feel. Whether it's "rough," "smooth," or "bumpy," this hands-on play engages their senses while boosting vocabulary.

3. Music and Mimicry:

Sing simple Thanksgiving songs together. Choose songs with repetitive lyrics and simple melodies like "Five Little Turkeys" or "Mr. Turkey". These not only introduce new words but also help with rhythm and melody. Plus, the repetitive nature of these songs is excellent for language reinforcement. Encourage your child to clap, stomp, or move along with the rhythm. It's like a mini Thanksgiving concert with your little rockstar!

4. Visual Vocabulary:

Incorporate visual aids into your daily routine. Use cards with pictures of common objects, actions, or emotions. Point to the pictures and say the words, encouraging your little one to focus on the visual cues. This visual support can be a helpful bridge for those struggling with verbal communication.

5. Foodie Fun:

Thanksgiving is a feast for the senses, and the kitchen is a language-rich environment. Engage your child in the cooking process, describing the ingredients, actions, and smells. Simple words like "mix," "pour," and "yum" become building blocks for their vocabulary. Plus, the end result is a tasty reward for both of you!

6. Sign Language Connection:

Consider introducing simple sign language gestures alongside spoken words. This visual form of communication can provide an additional means of expression for your little one. Start with basic signs like "more," "eat," or "tall done.” It's a fantastic way to bridge the communication gap and build a strong foundation for language development.

Remember, progress comes in all shapes and sizes. Celebrate the small victories, and don't hesitate to adapt these activities to suit your child's unique needs. Thanksgiving is about gratitude, and your dedication to supporting your little one's language journey is truly something to be thankful for. Wishing you a language-filled Thanksgiving filled with love and laughter! 🦃🗣️🧡

November 14, 2023