Say, your child replaces the ‘f’ sound with a ‘p’ so they say PAN when they mean FAN or POUR when they mean FOUR. Now after one or two therapy sessions we have managed to get your child to “bite your lip and blow” and we are seeing a little ‘f’ sound right there! Result! But now we need to practise this so it becomes a habit, so that we can start building up some little words like FAN and FUR and FAR or FOUR….
Now, for older children, let’s say over 6 years old, we might just get away with saying: ‘darling come and sit down now and do your speech practice quickly before you go and play.’ But for the little ones, under 5 years old, it is often necessary to “package” the practice within daily activities.
So, our goal might be: produce an ‘f’ about 50 times a day. You might think: ‘oh gosh, I won’t be able to do that, it’s too much’, but wait! It can actually be done as part of your daily activities.
Here are some little examples and you will be able to think of some more for sure.
Before brushing teeth look into the mirror together and say ‘let’s practise our “bunny sound” quickly: bite your lip and blow: FFF FFF FFF FFF FFF FFF FFFF’. Look in the mirror, get as many done here as possible, 10-15, RESULT! Now brush teeth and done.
A … muffin? Pop a little birthday candle on it and say: ‘let’s practice our Bunny Sound here quickly: bite your lip and blow and try and blow out this candle.’ FFF FFF FFF FFF FFF (you might have to re-light it a few times). Do 10-15, now eat the cake, done!
Pretend to fly an aeroplane and say: “’oh look, I can make the ‘bunny sound’ and make a noise at the same time VVV VVV VVV VVV VVV. That’s cool, let’s try. Ten times?’
‘Oh, that soup is a bit hot, let’s blow it, let’s do it with our “bunny sound”: FFF FFF FFF.’ Do ten and by now you have done most if not all of your repeats.
Select a book with a lot of ‘f’ sounds it in or a book with bunnies (your Speech Therapist will make suggestions). Read the book together with your child and each time there is a bunny or a fish practise the FFF FFF FFF FFF.
By now you will probably have exceeded your target of 50 times FFFs a day!!
Now for something different like “Story Telling”: your child’s goal might be: “to talk about what’s first, then, next and finally”.
Ask your child to think about what is first, what’s next and then last before you start brushing teeth.
Talk about what did we eat the other day at Nando’s? ‘First, I had xxx then I had xxx. What about you?’ Or as you are about to lay the table: ‘what do we need to do first, then and then?’
Pretend to be an alien who does not know what to do first, get it all wrong and have a laugh… ‘oh I think those underpants must go on my head?!’ Etc
Use figurines with farms or Lego houses or Playmobil and help your child make up simple little stories using first, then next and last.
Share a book with a clear start, middle and finish and talk about the characters, who does what, who is first, then and then and finally.
At the end of each session with your child we will talk about what the targets for the week will be and together we can think about how you can incorporate your practice easily into your daily life, no matter how busy you are!
Be sure to bring this up next time you have your session, so that we can figure out together what will work for you and your daily schedules.
Together we can make it happen!
Find a speech and language therapist for your child in London. Are you concerned about your child’s speech, feeding or communication skills and don’t know where to turn? Please contact me and we can discuss how I can help you or visit my services page.