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“Can I help?” comes the question as little hands drag a stool or chair over to the counter.

Many children like to help out in the kitchen. Preparing a meal or snack together is a great opportunity for parents to get things done while learning language skills at the same time. But, it’s important to remember to build skills in all areas of language and not just labeling items.

Here are three activities that will help you to build and develop a variety of language skills while spending time in the kitchen.

Activity: Making juice from frozen concentrate)

Items needed: frozen juice can, jug, mixing spoon, water)

Target vocabulary: frozen, can, lid, ice, cold, water, mixing spoon, jug, lemon, drink, thirsty, empty, full, pour, in, stir

Target categorization: food/drink (ice, water, lemons); utensils (mixing spoon, jug)

Target feelings: cold, wet, thirsty

Target procedures: What are we going to do? What did we do?

Literacy: plan out how to make juice using recipe and instructions & pictures/words or both depending on the age of your child

Problem solving: What happens if the frozen juice stays out of the freezer? Why do we add water? Why do we add ice? Why do we keep it in the fridge? What happens as we stir?

Activity: Making a sandwich (e.g ham & cheese)

Items needed: Play or real food ingredients (bread, cheese, ham, mayonnaise, butter, etc)

Target vocabulary: bread, butter, ham, cheese, in, on, out, open, close, cut, spread, knife, plate, napkin, eat, hungry, full, empty

Target categorization: ingredients, utensils

Target feelings: hungry, full, empty

Target procedures: What are we going to do? What did we do?

Literacy: ‘making a sandwich’ recipe and instructions using pictures/words or both depending on the age of your child

Problem solving: What happens if I don’t put butter on? How much of each ingredient should I put on the sandwich? Why does the bread go back in the bag?

Activity: Making frozen chocolate chip dough cookies

Items needed: package of cookie dough, knife, cookie sheet

Target vocabulary: dough, round, cookie, sweet, chocolate chip/chunks, cut, soft/hard, squishy, hungry, oven, preheat, timer, open/close, ready/not ready, bake, cold/hot

Target categorization: ingredients, utensils

Target feelings: hungry, full, empty, soft, hard, cold, hot

Target procedures: What are we going to do? What did we do?

Literacy: look at the instructions on the label and discuss . Have child read directions if old enough. Draw them out for your child if he/she isn’t reading yet

Problem solving: The dough is frozen – what happens if stays out of the freezer? Can we cut it when frozen? Why do we cut it? How thick do we cut it? What happens if we cut thicker or thinner slices? Why do we put it in the oven? Why does it get hot in the oven …etc.

 

Wondering if your child has a speech or language communication delay? Feel free to contact us for more information about your child’s language development (https://www.speechtherapycentres.com/contact-us) or call 905-886-5941.