Most families with a male child are likely to have a wooden train set lying around somewhere. However, little do they know how useful this toy can be at developing speech and language when it is used in the right way.
Here are some of the reasons why this toy can be a great therapy tool.
Especially to help children with speech and language difficulties.
1. Achieve Speech Sound Targets
As with most toys, often the train set comes in multiple pieces and they have to be put together which is half the fun of the game. So why not use them as reward pieces every time your child is able to achieve one of their speech sound targets. For example if you are working on the ‘r’ sound, every time they get a word correct such as ‘rabbit’ they get a new piece to build the train set. Once the train set is built they can then have a turn at taking the train around the track for each sentence they say correctly.
2. Teach Language Concepts
Train sets can also be very useful for teaching language concepts. You can teach the concepts of ‘on’ and ‘in’ through play e.g. “put the track on the floor” or “the train goes in the tunnel. Other concepts such as ‘over’ and ‘under’ can also work if your train set has a bridge, which the train can go over and under. If your train has multiple carriages, you can teach concepts such as ‘first, second, third and last’ when describing the order of the carriages. The concepts of ‘fast’ and ‘slow’ can also be taught in a fun way by modelling them using the trains on the track.
3. Build Vocabulary
General vocabulary is another great way to use train sets, especially if the train set also has houses and other building, signs, trees, bushes and animals that can go along side the train track. Most train sets have an array of different coloured trains which can be a fun way to learn the names of these colours. The track pieces come in a range of different shapes such as ‘circle, curved and straight’ pieces, which allows you to work on describing objects as well.
Contact us for results focused speech therapy
This article was written by our Speech Pathologist Ashleigh Fattah who is a Speech Pathology Australia member. If you have speech pathology related questions, make an appointment. We‘ll provide you with simple and effective therapy targeted to your concerns. Contact us today.