Preschoolers are just learning the basics of communication. Whether it’s their first word, a sentence, or sign language, they are all so excited to share what they know with you! There is no better time than now to start fostering children’s love for language, and these educational language activities will help them grow as well-rounded communicators.
1) Play games like I Spy, Charades, Chess, or 20 Questions.
These activities will help children engage with language in exciting ways while also providing them opportunities to build their vocabulary, fluency, strategic skills, and confidence! You can even choose online games like puzzles or online chess for kids to bond with them and teach them. Always remember to listen and ask questions like “What do you think?” or “Tell me more about…” so that they have the opportunity to share what they know with you!
2) Encourage them to ask questions about things they don’t understand and then answer their questions.
Asking and answering questions is a key part of communication. It allows them to connect what they’ve learned with you! For example, instead of just saying “no” when a child asks if the sky is blue or green, tell them why the sky isn’t one color and then help them understand that it’s actually a mix of blue & green.
3) Have children read aloud the words in a story you’ve already read together.
After reading a book, have a child repeat the story using their own words. This encourages them to use descriptive language, and they are building fluency and enhancing their vocabulary. It also allows you to point out and ask questions about new vocabulary words!
4) Enncourage parents to share one book a day with their child.
Early language development begins at home, and many studies have revealed the importance of reading to children daily. When young children hear words read aloud, they develop phonemic awareness (the differentiation between different sounds in spoken words). Many people do not realize how much they are helping their child’s development when they read a book together for just five minutes each day. A fun book to share with preschoolers might be Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin Jr. & John Archambault, as it is one of the most popular alphabet books, and children will love seeing the pictures and hearing a parent read each letter of the alphabet.
5) Teach them how to make up stories by using toys and props around the house or classroom to act out their ideas.
Every child is unique and will have their own way of learning new ideas. For example, a child may be a kinesthetic learner (learns through hands-on activities) where they learn by doing – so you can find little trinkets that you can use to teach them new things. For example, teaching them the names of animals can be done by using a stuffed animal and acting out how it moves. Or you can teach them why animals like to eat certain foods by making up stories about two animals eating their favorite food!
Here are some other ways you can Help Preschoolers Develop Strong Language Skills:
- Go over important topics, such as the alphabet, numbers, and shapes. Encourage children to name all of them out loud. You can use flashcards or books to help keep them engaged in the learning process.
- Teach children how to read simple words out loud. Start with short words like cat, dog, mommy, and daddy. Then they’ll have fun making up sentences using their newfound skills!
- Put teaching materials in convenient places for children to use, such as a bookshelf or toy box.
- Make sure they say hello and goodbye to people they know, like family members, teachers, etc. Also, have them say thank you when someone gives him something nice or does a kind thing for him.
- Tell you “words of the day,” a new word they’ve learned.
- Talk about how things look, feel and taste. Then encourage them to describe them in words, like “The cookie is crunchy! I’m starving!” or “This tomato tastes salty.”
By incorporating these activities, you will be providing opportunities for preschoolers to grow their vocabulary, communicate with you and develop a love for reading!
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