Speech/Language Areas You Can Target While Playing With the Water/Sand Table
You can target just about anything with a water table! Here are some ideas for you, depending on your child’s needs:
- Imitation skills: Some little ones need to first work on imitation skills. One thing you can do is imitate your child’s actions, vocalizations and/or words while he plays. Imitate something he does/says and then wait. You can learn more about building imitation skills in my post all about turn taking and imitation.
- Turn Taking Skills: Practice taking turns with toys to help teach the import skill of turn taking, which is vital to speech, language & social development.
- Animal sounds: Grab some small toy animals and throw them in the water/sand table! Model different animal sounds and provide your child with opportunities to imitate you and make the animals talk.
- Articulation (speech sounds): You can use the water table to target sounds your child may be working on in speech therapy. For example, if your child is working on the /p/ /b/ and /m/ sounds, you can gather items that begin with those sounds and place them in the water/sand table for play! Say the words and encourage your child to repeat your words.
- Body Part Identification (on self or toys)
- Pronouns (I, me, you, he, she, they, hers, his, etc.)
- Prepositions: You can use water toys, cars, toy animals (just about anything) to target preposition vocabulary while playing with the water/sand table.
- Basic concepts: sizes, shapes, colors
- Adjectives: other describing words
- Verbs and verb use
- Requesting: The water table is a great time to work on simple requesting skills. You can hold a desired toy just out of your child’s reach, look at him and WAIT. Model the language he needs if he needs a prompt/cue.
- General pretend play skills
- Following Simple Directions
- Answering Simple Questions (who, what, yes/n0)