If you don’t already know, the Melissa & Doug brand has the best toys, games, and activities to use with your child. The products often even list ways to use them to help develop stronger language skills for your child. I have written about their reusable sticker pad product previously in my post 10 Toys for Under $10 for Language Development, but the product deserves a post of its own.
The Play House! Reusable Sticker Pad, first of all, can currently be purchased for under $6. The product will allow for many uses with your child, and you can also target many language skills in this single product. The pad comes with 5 house scenes; a bedroom, the kitchen (my favorite), a bathroom, a living room, and a backyard. Each scene comes with a full sheet of reusable stickers that can be placed in the scene. For example, the kitchen scene comes with stickers of children eating, a mother cooking, cookies, fruits, plates, a dog, chairs, a blender, and so much more.
How can you incorporate language skills?
Each scene has at least 30 themed stickers that can be placed in the room. Review the names of the stickers with your child prior to playing with the pad. You can see if your child knows the names of the objects by asking him to point to specific ones.
One way to practice using longer utterances is to have your child request from you what sticker he wants to put on the scene. Encourage and model for your child to use longer sentences when requesting. If your child uses 1-word utterances (i.e. “chair”), model for your child a 2-3 word utterance (i.e. “want chair” or “I want chair”). See if your child can repeat the phrase.
The activity allows for a lot of discussion about spatial concepts (these are small prepositional words that express the location of something, such as in, on, under, next to). After your child requests for a sticker to put on the page, ask him where he wants to put it. If he points to a specific spot on the page and says “here”, help model for him the correct spatial concept (i.e. “under the table”).
Provide your child directions as to where to put specific stickers (i.e. “Put the bird on the fence”). Increase the difficulty on the directions depending on your child’s level.
The sticker pad has many boys and girls your child can place in the scenes. After putting one of these stickers on a page, ask your child what the boy or girl is doing. Help your child formulate a sentence, using he or she (i.e. “She is riding a bike” or “He is eating”). Review withy your child that we say he for a boy and we say she for a girl.
To purchase this product click here.