There’s no need to take special time or find a sterile and stimulus-free room to help our children learn to communicate and move forward. It is possible, and even better, to do this during their daily routine!
You will be surprised to find how much regular interaction between you and your children, such as bath time, has learning potential.
Like what? We collected for you some ideas that do not require any special arrangements at all:
Soap– If your children enjoy it when you soap them, this is an opportunity to encourage them to use verbs. Put some soap on your hand and wait. Wait for your child to try to ask you to “soap”. Even an attempt to ask (say, using one syllable or a half word) is excellent. It doesn’t have to sound exactly as you planned. The main thing is that your children will experience, practice, and enjoy communication.
- Want to vary it? Your children can tell you what to soap. Ask them: What to soap now, the arm or the leg? This is an excellent opportunity to teach them body parts.
- Keep it mutual! From time to time, offer your children to soap your hands or fingers (:
Washing – Do your children enjoy the water that runs on the body and washes the soap? Another opportunity to encourage communication! Start washing them for a few seconds, then stop the water. This is an opportunity to encourage them to use a verb: “wash”. Wait until they try to ask for it themselves (an attempt is excellent too!) and only then go back to washing them.
- Want to vary? You can show them how the water flow can change from weak to strong, and let them choose. This way, you can teach them about the difference between the two. You can let them adjust the temperature and ask for a little colder or a little warmer water.
- Keep it mutual! From time to time, offer them to wash your hand. Just be careful not to wet the whole room (:
Soap bubbles – Soap bubbles are a very popular game, and they fit great for the bathroom. To encourage your child to use communication, start making bubbles. After a while stop, and wait for your children to ask you to make more bubbles! Want to vary and interspace? Playing with soap bubbles is an excellent opportunity to encourage eye contact. After you stop making bubbles, raise the bubble wand and place it at eye level. There is a good chance that your child will follow the bubble stick, and his eyes will meet yours. When this happens and eye contact is made, reinforce immediately, and make a lot of bubbles! Be playful, blow up the bubbles and add voices that follow the game.
Many other ideas can be incorporated in bath time: shaving foam, a rubber duck that enters the water and comes out by surprise, cups with holes in the bottom that create an effect of rain. Each of these games can be used to encourage communication. All you have to do is start, arouse your children’s interest, then stop and encourage them to communicate.