While the EKKA has been cancelled for the second year in a row due to the current South East Queensland lockdown, here at Active Speech Pathology, we would still love to bring the EKKA to you with a series of EKKA Themed Language Activities!
Special events that take place in our community can be a terrific tool to teach children language. The EKKA brings the country and city together and celebrates cookery, animals and agriculture all of which are wonderful ways to add to and build your child’s oral language skills. Here are our top EKKA Themed Language Activities.
Playing with Farm Toys
What to target? Answering WH questions, prepositions, vocabulary, commenting and requesting.
If you have toy farm animals at home, then these are a great toy to use to help build your child’s language skills. A set of farm animals can be used in many different ways, here are just some:
Answering WH questions – throughout play you can ask your child many different questions. Here are a few examples:
- What animal gives us milk?
- Where do ducks live?
- When do roosters crow?
Prepositions – place your animals around the farm or around your house and practice describing where they are (e.g., the cow is in the barn or the chicken is on the roof)
Vocabulary – teaching the names of the animals and their babies (e.g., cow/calf, chicken/chick), body parts (hooves, beak, feathers, wool) and other things you might see on a farm (e.g., barn, pond, fields, crops, chicken coup etc.)
Commenting – during farm play you can make different comments. Here are a few to try:
- I see a big cow
- The chicken is red and yellow
- What a noisy rooster!
Requesting – your child can practice this skill by asking for different animals during play (e.g., “I want the cow”). If they need a bit of help with this try offering choices (e.g., “Do you want the chicken or the cow?”) or even phrasing your questions in a yes/no format (eg., “Do you want the cow?”).
Cooking with Fruits and Veggies
What to target? Vocabulary, sorting, counting and describing.
Try cooking a meal or a dish together using different fruits or vegetables (e.g., fruit salad, roast vegetables) that would be on show at the EKKA. Here are just some ideas of how you can target language while cooking with fruits and vegetables:
- Vocabulary – use a new fruit or vegetable and/or teach new verbs (e.g., chop, cut, grate, slice).
- Sorting – organise different foods into categories of fruits or vegetables.
- Counting – count how many of each fruit you have or how many times you cut the fruit.
- Describing – you can teach a lot of new vocabulary when describing fruits and vegetables. You can talk about how they look (colour, shape, size), how they feel (rough, bumpy, smooth, slimy, wet) and how they taste (crunchy, sweet, sour, bitter).
Create a Pretend EKKA
What to target? Pretend play, vocabulary and following directions.
Try using recycled materials and simple toys from around the house to make your very own mini EKKA. You can include ticket making, and some of the classic games such as ring toss, fishing and knock down the bottles. Get creative and use materials like toilet paper tubes, paper plates and paper clips to make these simple yet entertaining games. Try hosting the Grand Animal Parade. Then go to the ‘EKKA’. Focus on the following language skills:
- Following directions – giving single or multi-step rules for the games (e.g., first stack the tubes in a pyramid, then throw the ball)
- Vocabulary – use these fun game to teach your child new words (e.g., parade, toss, catch)
- Pretend Play – pretend play is a great way practice language skills in a fun way. Get creative with your play and take on the role of different people at a carnival (e.g., using tickets at each game, winning a prize, take turns being the game operator etc.)
While it’s very sad that the EKKA won’t be lighting up the RNA Showgrounds next week, we hope you can bring some of the fun and excitement to your place through these EKKA Themed Language Activities.