As a family, you probably spend a majority of your time in the kitchen – making and eating meals, cleaning up, and naturally gathering for conversation. There are so many ways you can keep your little one involved
(where your child is actively learning and reinforcing their skills). If you’re a meal planner, encourage your child to sit with you and help meal plan. They can look through the grocery ads to find the ingredients as you list them. This helps with categorizing (knowing to look for the broccoli in the vegetable section), following
directions (one step direction “Find the broccoli” or a two-step direction “Find the broccoli and the chicken”) and it becomes a social activity because you are interacting together. If your little one is too young for this activity, just
by looking at the ads as you make the list and talk about it, you are helping them make associations. For your kids 3 and older, you can list a meal and see how many ingredients they know are in the recipe (for example, if you are having lasagna). They can also go to the pantry or cabinet to see if you need to add an item to the list (“Go look in the pantry. Do we have pasta noodles?”). It typically takes longer to involve your little one in activities like this, but your child will love these moments because you are doing something together.
Children love to be just like “mommy” or “daddy.”
~Marena Mitchell, Speech-Language Pathologist
Daily tips, activities, and suggestions on how to naturally embed speech, language, play, fine motor, gross motor, and cognitive skills into your child's day, often using the materials already found in your home environment.
Marena Mitchell is a speech-language pathologist