Language Through Play

  1. Language Play

Play is the best way to develop your child’s language during their early years. This article is about ‘Language Through Play’.

We naturally teach the basics of communication through play and below we have outlined some great ideas for you to have fun with outdoors now that we can see the sunshine!

The language through play ideas below target: attention and listening, turn-taking, understanding, vocabulary development, pretend and imaginative play skills, social skills and grammar.


  • Make a den to have your own adventure with knights, dragons, cowboys and Indians or a cake shop!
  • Make potions and mud pies. All children love to use their imagination and what is better than mixing everything you can find to make a secret potion! You could write down the different recipes for your potions to support memory, sequencing ideas, following steps, vocabulary, number (quantities) and imagination.
  • Collect nature: take a bucket on a walk or around the garden and collect leaves, stones, flowers and talk about what you can see and what things look/smell/feel like. You could make a collage out of them when you get home.
  • Dig for mini-beasts! You can use all kinds of adjectives and adverbs to describe them (slimy, wriggly, fast, spiky, spotty).
  • Give your child ‘missions’ to complete. For example: “run to the slide, touch the tree, turn around 3 times, hop back to me”.
  • A whole range of games support turn-taking and social skills alongside understanding and use of language; here are just a few: Chase, scarecrow tig, duck-duck-goose, what time is it Mr Wolf?



A ball is great for all of the above skills and can be used in so many different ways.

  • Throwing and catching: wait until your name is called, look at one person but call somebody else’s name to catch, ‘hot potato’, ready steady go!
  • Answer a question when the ball gets to you, eg ‘what is your favourite…’
  • Use a different verb each time you pass it: throw, roll, bounce, kick.
  • Stick pictures to the ball and name the one that is facing you. You could make a sentence out of it or see how many adjectives you can think of to describe the picture.
  • Throw the ball into different hoops/buckets or make a home-made bowling alley with tin cans.
  • A good old game of football!
The Talking House - Language Through Play

The Talking House – Language Through Play