Better Hearing and Speech Month Series: Summer Language and Literacy Tips

May was Better Hearing and Speech (BHSM) month. To help bring awareness to the topic, The American Speech-Language-Hearing Association (ASHA) launched a new campaign as well as providing new resources intended to educate about this year’s topic ‚ÄúCommunication Disorders are Treatable”. I’m sharing summer language and literacy tips, to give your kids extra support.

To participate in Better Hearing and Speech Month and to do my part to help bring awareness to this topic I have been posting about speech and hearing topics during the whole month of May. If you haven’t already, be sure to check out my posts on Newborn Hearing Tests and Follow up Noise induced hearing loss in children.

Summer Language and Literacy Tips

To round up the month and to start thinking about summer, today I am posting about summer language and literacy tips. As a preschool teacher and a mom, this is a topic that I am very passionate about. Literacy and language are such an important part of a child’s development and academic success. 

One of the easiest and most enjoyable ways to promote this in your child is through story time! Books are a wonderful way to build a child’s vocabulary while opening up their imaginations with delightful stories.

The great thing about story time is that it’s never too early or late to start! Children as young as infants enjoy hearing the smooth rhythm and soothing tones of a parent reading to them. Children of all ages and developmental stages beyond that can enjoy some quality time with a parent a good book!

There is no better time to start or continue this tradition then summer time!

Literacy Tips

Here are a few fun ways to make literacy a fun part of this summer:

* Plan a time- schedule a time during the day to have some quiet reading time. Whether you spread out a blanket outside on a warm afternoon or relax inside on a hot summer night, make a consistent time each day to read

* Plan trips to your local library– A trip to the library can be a fun and cheap day out for you and the kids. It’s also a great time for kids to pick out their own books that they are interested in. Also a lot of libraries have special summer reading reward programs to help keep the kids motivated. Visit your local library to find out what programs are available near you!

* Make your own rewards- If your local library doesn’t offer a reading rewards program, consider starting your own. Use minutes of reading as a way to earn points for towards special family outings or activities

* Make it a Party– a fellow mom at my son’s school was telling me that last summer they started having a theme day every week of the summer. They would choose a book, and use that as the theme. If it was a book about pirates for example, they would dress in pirate costumes, read the story, then have a snack and craft activity around the theme. She even started inviting a few friends over for their theme days and would rotate homes. I thought this was a fantastic way to bring stories to life for young kids!

* Start a summer journal or scrapbook– this is something that I decided to start with my kids this summer! We are going to put together a scrapbook including photos, drawings, stickers and journal entries about trips or activities that we do this summer. I think it will be a great way for my kids to practice their writing skills while putting together a keepsake of our summer fun!

* Choose a family chapter book– when I was a kid I remember that every time we went on a road-trip that my parents would bring along a chapter book to read to the family on the way. We have a couple family trips planned this year, and I think I will carry on this tradition! I think this will be a good way to enjoy a family story together while keeping the kids entertained in the car.

For more tips and advice on encouraging literacy and language visit the ASHA website’s section on reading and writing From that site you are also able to access useful advice via a podcast given by Lyndsey Zurawski, a speech-language pathologist in the school district of Palm Beach County, in Wellington, Florida. In her podcast she offers even more tips for encouraging language and literacy skills during summer. She also discusses how to maintain momentum during the summer months for parents of children who see a speech-language pathologist during the school year and how academic struggles could be a potential indicator of an undiagnosed communication disorder in a child.

Help keep your child ready for the next school year by encouraging literacy in a fun way this summer!



About the author

Emily Buys

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