'Talk with me' is the theme for Speech Pathology Week, August 23-29th this year. As both a parent and speech pathologist I have a keen interest in anything that encourage young children to talk and interact more. There are so many everyday things that foster good communication skills and empower children to be better talkers. So.. Here are five fun and FREE things to do around Brisbane with young children:
1. Attend a Babies, Books and Rhymes (babies up to 18 months), Toddler Time (babies and toddlers 1-3yrs), or Children's Storytime (children 2-5yrs) session at your local library. These group sessions are typically 30mins and run weekly at numerous libraries around Brisbane. My personal favourite is Rhyme Time on Thursday mornings at The Corner State Library where my daughter can also negotiate her way around the craft activities.
2. Have some outdoor fun during a free Little Days Out activity. Held every Thursday and Sunday at South Bank from 9-1pm these sessions are a pop in and out style so you can go for as long or as little as you like. So many of these activities foster interactive language and play or make a hilarious talking point afterwards (like my 2yr old explaining the game of tennis). Upcoming activities include Robots and Spaceships to make robots and share in alien adventures, or Boppin' Babies which is an early learning music program for newborns-4yr old.
3. Enjoy a free music session around Brisbane. Powerkids, for 0-5yr olds, is held every Tuesday morning at New Farm Powerhouse incorporating dance, music, and social interaction with other children. Or you could try Hickory Dickory Rock with Tim Jackman from 11-12pm on Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays at State Library. Tim is mesmerising and captures the children's attention with his magical maracas.
4. Join a Meetup playgroup in your area. The number of children in my playgroup has doubled since I joined and we meet regularly at the park or each other's house for the children to play. Admittedly, we also often enjoy leaving the children behind for uninterrupted dinners together.
5. Take the kids along to ACT-ivate Children's Club. This is a free weekly event run by Brisbane City Council for 3-5yr olds Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays in various parks around Brisbane. The sessions incorporate books, puppets, music, balls, hoops, tunnels, jumping sacks and costumes to get kids interacting and engaging in healthy activity together.
Interactive play, music and books are such powerful ways to foster little communicators, so in light of Speech Pathology Week, why not try some of these activities around Brisbane and let's get our children talking.