Some games and toys are directly related to building language or helping with speech articulation. I blogged about 2 such games last time. Another valuable tool for speech therapy is a toy where you build on it, adding pieces as the child you are working with gives you more responses, thus using the toy as a reinforcement.

I wanted to share some new toys that can be used for just that–to reinforce a child as he is reponding to your prompts. I am working with a little boy who appears to be apraxic. When I give him a verbal and physical prompt and he answers, I reinforce him with a piece of a puzzle. or a lego that goes with a set such as the zoo. Here are two of my favorites and my reveiws:

My 3D Zoo” by Alex Toys

Little ones double the fun as they assemble their zoo animals and then start the play. As soon as kids lined up the slots and gave the moose his striped legs and antlers, I heard, “I’m a rainbow moose, what’s your name?” as he introduced himself to the checkered elephant. Sturdy, chunky pieces with lively colorful patterns fit together adding 2-4 pieces to the bodies of 10 animals, including a lion, giraffe, whale, octopus, squirrel and a mobile bee and parrot to tag along on any of the pack. As kids animate their completed puzzles, language comes alive. This make and play toy was loaded back into it’s box with a handle as a 3 year-old took off to a new location for fun.

Recommended Age: 3 and up

Suggested Retail Price: $16.99

Available at Amazon: Click here

“Zoo” by Lego

Let’s take off with the zoo caretaker in his safari coupe to tend to the animals. Use the free bricks to build an entrance, enclosure for animals, ice structure for the water world, or rocks to climb. Lego listened to Moms who wanted a balance of bricks for free play with characters and animals to suggest a theme for a story. Smart Moms–those are the ingredients for pretend play and language learning. Give a child a start and let them direct the play with smart props. Clear bricks suggesting water or ice, a slab of meat for feeding and a pitch fork that fits in the elephant’s mouth all add to the fun.

Suggest Age: 2-5 years

Suggested Retail Price: $24.99

Available on Amazon: Click here

The opinions expressed are solely those of the author. The above products were provided for review by Alex Toys and Lego.