By: Amanda Cifuentes, M.S., CCC-SLP
Pumpkins are everywhere in the fall, so it is easy (and fun!) to incorporate language learning into everyday activities! Here are some ideas for incorporating vocabulary words, language concepts, and language activities into your family’s fall festivities:
- Whether you pick your pumpkins at the store or from the pumpkin patch, you can talk about a variety of basic
concepts. Talk about the size of the pumpkins (big, medium, small, tiny, gigantic, huge), texture of the pumpkins and pumpkin stem (bumpy, smooth, rough), and the colors you see (orange, white, brown).
- This is a great opportunity to practice following directions, prepositions, and sequencing!
- When preparing your pumpkin for carving, provide simple directions for your child to follow: “Let’s get a spoon and dig out the seeds!” “Put the seeds in the bowl,” and “Will you put the top back on the pumpkin?”
- Talk about prepositions: “The pumpkin seeds are in the pumpkin- we need to take them out!” and “The stem is on top of the pumpkin”.
- Let your child be the teacher! When carving pumpkins, let them give you directions to practice sequencing skills by asking “Now what should I do?” and “What next?” If they are having trouble telling you the next step, give choices: “Should we scoop the seeds first or draw the face first?” and “Should I carve the eye or the nose first?”
Baking and Eating Pumpkin Treats
- Make a pumpkin recipe! Not only is it fun and delicious, but the perfect time to practice language skills.
- While baking, give your child directions to follow: “Can you give me the sugar?” and “Pass me the spoon and the bowl.”
- Baking is an easy way to talk about sequencing: “First we will put in the egg. Next, we mix the batter,” and “First we bake the cookies, then we will ice them, and last we will eat them!”
- When you’ve finished baking and are enjoying the yummy treats, have a taste test! You can talk about how the pumpkin muffins are “sweet” and “soft” and discuss the “salty” and “crunchy” pumpkin seeds.