Cooler weather brings more opportunities for new words
Each season brings an opportunity for new words with your little ones. With the first cool change coming through some parts of Queensland, there are more opportunities to play outside for longer now that the worst of summer heat is over.
Playing outdoors in yards and parks can provide your child with more room for unstructured play and more adventure, spontaneity and risk-taking. More space means freedom for big movements like running, jumping, and kicking which are valuable for children’s ongoing physical development. The outdoors provides rich opportunities for you and your child to use your imagination, inventiveness, and resourcefulness as well as your muscles!
Try some of these activities this weekend and don’t forget to add in the new words like “kick” and “climb” while they’re happening (“Wow, that was a big kick” “You are climbing so high!”) so your child gets a boost in language learning and will be able to ask for these activities again and again!
- kicking or throwing balls outside
- walking on different surfaces or around different objects
- footpath hopscotch or chalk drawing
- scavenger hunt in the garden or your local park
- climbing trees, playing hide and seek outdoors
If you live where there isn’t a great change from season to season, books can expand on your child’s understanding of the world beyond their direct experience. Cold weather words include frost, shiver, blanket, and hibernate. If you’re lucky enough to have a real autumn, talk about the colour of the leaves and how some trees are deciduous, shedding their leaves each year. Don’t be afraid of using big words!
Grab a few of these winter tales and read outside or ask your local library staff for more suggestions.
- Winter is here by Kevin Henkes
- If winter comes, tell it I’m not here by Simona Ciraola
- Goodbye winter, hello spring by Kenard Pak.
- The big freeze by Pippa Curnick
- Mr Brown by Thomasina Williams