Thursday, June 30, 2016

Therapy Tip: Teaching Little and Big

Welcome to Therapy Thursday! This is the day that I share a tip based upon my experience as a pediatric speech-language pathologist and the mother of a child with special needs.

Today's tip is:

Teaching Big and Little

Big and little is a concept that is important for young children to learn. Between ages 2-3, I start targeting this concept in speech therapy. Distinguishing between big and little items is a skill that is commonly tested on language tests around 2-3 years old.

Understanding big and little is important for later math skills. But, big and little are important adjectives for young children to understand and use. When a child can use big and little to describe, it will encourage them to use phrases as well ("big car").

There are plenty of flashcards, books, and games targeting this concept for toddlers and preschoolers. These are great and have their uses. However, real objects around your home will make teaching this concept easy and meaningfully.

Here are 8 ideas to show your child big and little with things around your home:
1. Spoons

2. Trucks, cars, tractors, or other vehicles

3. Basketball versus a baseball

4. Cups

5. Socks and shoes

6. Sticks, rocks, and leaves when playing outside

7. Towels

8. Hands and feet

Teaching Tips:
-When a child is just starting out, the big and the little objects I use are not close in size. You can see for spoons, I choose to use serving spoons and toddler spoons to show a marked difference between big and little.

-You can play a sorting game to teach this idea. Tell the child to put all the big trucks in one bucket and all the little trucks in another bucket.

-You can hold up two items and have them point to the big or little one.

-You can give directions using big and little. You can hold up two spoons and tell the child to give the big spoon to daddy.

-You can simply talk about big and little. When putting on shoes, you can remark about how your shoes are big but the child's shoes are little.

There you go! Have fun teaching your child using things around your home! Come back next Thursday.

Therapy Thursday is for educational purposes only and not intended for therapeutic advice.

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