Cooler weather is finally here now and I don’t know about you but I feel like actually spending time outside. Sorry, summer lovers – I am all about the little bit of chill that comes with fall. There are lots of great ways to incorporate working on speech and language skills all while enjoying the great outdoors. Here are just a few to get you started!
Autumn Scavenger Hunt
Start by making a list of items you hope to find outside, and then check off each one as you find it. Some items to get you started: red leaf, yellow leaf, orange leaf, green leaf, brown leaf, whole acorn, acorn cap/top, pinecone, twig, flower, blade of grass, stone, winged seed, and piece of bark.
You can even add in some sounds like a bird chirping or wind rustling the leaves. Did you notice all of the describing words that can be added? You can also use words to describe how each item feels (if possible). If you have small children or shorter attention spans, start with a small list of maybe 5-6 items. The next time you go out, try a list that’s one or two items longer.
Just by walking outside there is so much to see, hear, and touch. Try taking a walk and take turns describing something you see, hear, smell, or feel. Try to guess what the other person is describing.
“I see something red that flies!”
“I hear something barking!”
“I feel something rough!”
“I hear something crunching!”
You are not only working on describing, but also on turn-taking, listening, using clues to guess what something is, the list goes on.
Lots of families go apple-picking this time of year, but even if you don’t, apples are a bit cheaper since they’re in season. Grab some apples and make some delicious homemade applesauce – there is nothing like it! You can work on following directions, choosing what kind of apples will be best (sweet vs sour), and how much to mash the cooked apples (chunky applesauce vs. smooth applesauce). You can even add a small sprinkle of cinnamon if you like. You can eat it warm or cold. Allrecipes.com has some easy recipes if you need one. Enjoy!
Sarah Gonzales, M.A., CCC-SLP