Road trips, running errands, and trips to the grocery store are perfect opportunities to talk with your child! Conversation in the car is about making a connection and being a positive communication partner.
There are so many different ways to be a positive communication partner while enhancing conversation with your child in the car. Here are a few ideas:
· Play games such as “I Spy”, “Going on a Trip…,” “Count the Animals,” “Grow a Story”
o I Spy: Pick one item inside or outside of the car for your child to guess. Choose one characteristic about that item as a clue. It could be a characteristic, category, function, part, etc. “I Spy something that….belongs to the farm equipment category OR….something that is white and fluffy OR…something that makes milk.”
o Going on a Trip: This is a fun memory game! Each person adds an item to the trip list. See how many items you can remember. “We are going on a trip and bringing MITTS….(next person) we are going on a trip and bringing MITTS and A SLED.”
o Count the Animals: You can adapt this game to anything you see. Count how many cows you see. Count how many tractors you see.
o Grow a Story: Another fun memory game! Each person adds a part to the story. You can each add one word or phrases or sentences to the story! “Once upon a time… (next person) once upon a time there was a prince…and so on!”
· Listen to music and talk about what the lyrics mean.
· Talk about all the things you see on your drive. E.g. Windmill: talk about what it looks like, what it does, the parts of it, etc.
· Sequence the events of your road trip using words such as first, then, next, last. E.g. First we are driving to Grandma’s house. Then we will pick up Grandma and Grandpa. Last we will drive to Uncle Joe’s house for the birthday party.
You can easily make road trips fun and engaging for your child by talking with them, asking questions, and playing games!
WRITTEN BY MORGAN ZENNER, SPEECH-LANGUAGE PATHOLOGIST WITH WILDFLOWERS