Together, music, books, and play are powerful tools during your child’s early years. Nurturing a love for them early can foster many moments of happiness and enjoyment beyond childhood.
The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association strongly recommends the use of music activities to complement communication training methods that are typically practiced in public schools. Studies have shown music to be effective at improving speech and language output.
Additionally, reading activities help develop literacy and communication skills. Start reading to your child early, and not only will you foster a lifelong love, but you’ll also give them a headstart on building vocabulary and building self-confidence. Want to learn more about literacy? Check out this great resource page.
And lastly…PLAY! Did you know that play is so important for children that it is recognized as a right under the United Nations High Commission on Human Rights? Play has multiple benefits for both you and your child. In addition to strengthening your bond, play develops children’s skills in all areas: cognitive, communication, physical, and social/emotional. And especially relevant in today’s climate, play is a natural stress reliever and promotes healthy habits such as engaging the child in the world around them.
Here are a few different games and activities that you can try out at home:
- One of TLC’s blog posts has a great list of “play” resources to check out.
- Musical Shakers – Whether homemade or purchased, shakers can help speech language therapists to gauge listening and word identification skills. Make shakers out of used water bottles and dried pasta or beans. Thanks to In the Playroom for this idea – visit their website for additional instructions on making shakers. [source: https://txsource.com/2016/08/30/12-ways-incorporate-music-games-speech-therapy-sessions/]
- Book lists for children based on reading level and subject matter.
- More music-making instructions!