Thursday, June 11, 2015

Teaching toddlers to name body parts

Hi everyone! Today I'm blogging about something Macy is finally starting to master: naming body parts. This is typically a skill that two-year-olds develop, but with her speech delay it's been a I was very excited when she touched my nose the other day, smiled, and said, "Nose!" She is also naming other body parts, like head and eyes. I have three ways that have helped her finally begin naming her body parts, but these strategies could work for any child--even if you have a normally-developing child who is working on this skill:

#1: Mr. or Mrs. Potato Head

My now eleven-year-old had Mr. Potato Head, and of course had fun with it, but it wasn't until I was sitting in speech therapy a few months ago that I realized how awesome it is for naming body parts! Macy's speech therapist had her playing with Mr. Potato Head, and would take out the nose and exclaim "Nose!" or the eyes and say "Eyes!" It was an A-ha moment for me....of course this is a great toy for naming body parts! Why hadn't I thought of that before? The fact that you can take each body part out and put it back in--isolating each body part--makes it even better!

#2: Go Away, Big Green Monster!

I first saw this book at Macy's daycare; her teacher put on quite the performance reading the book, and Macy was transfixed, so I also fell in love with the book (click the picture above to see it on Amazon). Each page discusses a different body part (like squiggly green ears or a long bluish-greenish nose), and the pages fit on top of each other, creating a complete monster. When I read the book to her, after I say "nose," I touch the nose; after I say "hair," I touch her hair, etc. You could also do this touching your own nose, hair, etc., so she can see those body parts on you. My only complaint is that at this point it doesn't come as a board the pages end up getting easily ripped. Still a great book!

#3: Head, shoulders, knees, and toes
I sang this song to Macy one day, touching each body part, and she immediately sang it back to me! (Okay, so the words weren't totally there but the melody was...which made me as a music teacher pretty excited!) Macy loves this song, and it's a really wonderful way to teach body parts. Here is a video of the song (I especially love that the song is spoken first and then sung, as I think this is super helpful for speech-delayed children.)

What are your favorite ways to teach body parts? Feel free to comment below!

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