In today’s post, I talk about a few easy ways to use puzzles to build on your child’s language.

Why puzzles?

Almost every child I have worked with LOVES puzzles! It’s enough of a challenge to keep them interested and each little piece is usually something familiar and fun. What I’m showing here isn’t exactly an inset puzzle, but it basically serves the same function. I wish I had a link of where you could get it, but I believe I picked it up at a Target in California.

I also talk about how you can use language in your everyday situations with your child. Okay, so right now we’re in a pandemic and you may not be doing as many outings as you usually do. And I know trips to the grocery store aren’t what they used to be. But, whatever opportunities you have during the day, use those opportunities to comment, observe, and occasionally question.

Here’s a few key points to be aware of as you guide your child throughout the day

*Speak clearly and maybe at just a slightly slower rhythm than how you’d speak with your best friend or coworker

*Speak in complete sentences but it’s okay to focus on just one word and repeat that as well.

What do I mean?

Ok, so let’s go back to this puzzle…

If your child is 14 months old and is only saying a handful of words, here’s how you can talk to them about the puzzle.

Let’s say you grab the cow!

You can say,

“The cow lives in a barn.”

“The cow is black and white.”

“Cows say moo.”

“Moooo” (pause) “Mooooo” (pause)

The cow is hungry!

The cow says “mooooo” when he’s hungry.

Moooo!

And pause to see if your toddler gives moo a try!

Remember, it’s best to speak at a level that’s more advanced than what your child is speaking BUT when you expect them to follow directions or speak, it’s important to understand what’s a realistic expectation and what isn’t. You can get that here on my handout about the milestones.

If you’d like to get your copy of the BILINGUAL MILESTONES, CLICK HERE!