Tying action with words to improve understanding in children








When I am working with a little one on understanding skills….it is important that they learn that they have to “listen to understand.”   Some children will listen….they hear you…..but they are NOT being sure to “listen to understand.”……I often tell my husband of almost 18 years (we got married in 1993)…..that I know he heard me….I know he was listening…..but he was not listening so that he understood me….so that he will remember.  With the little ones….my goal is to teach them to listen so they understand and also remember.

When I work with a little one….in order to help her to listen to understand…the session may sound something like this:



Set up:  ball, car, block and box are used during this listening task

Therapist:    “Wait”(as I hold her hands on her lap)…..”Listen” (as I tap on her ears)……”Put the ball in the box”. 

Saying these words…wait and listen while keeping her hands still and tapping on her ears…will help her to learn to listen to the direction…..so that she starts to understand that she has to listen to understand

Now with the little ones that are having difficulty in the understanding of language…I help them by using the strategy:  Ready, set….Action

What does this mean…it means that I am tying action and words together…..I will help her to understand the direction…..by…..hand over hand….picking up the ball together….putting the ball in the box…..and as I am doing this with her….I am saying…..”Ball in box”

Tying your action with words helps your little one to understand language.


About Kim

My name is Kim Marino and I have been practicing as a licensed speech and language pathologist since 1993. I work on Long Island providing diagnostic evaluations and services to children from birth to age 21. My experience is vast and am proud to say that I work with children that may present with articulation and phonological concerns, oral motor feeding concerns, Down Syndrome feeding, cognitive rehabilitation, auditory processing delays, receptive language delays, cleft palate feeding and sound development and expressive language delays. Most importantly, I am the mother of four amazing children and am happily married to my childhood sweetheart. I feel blessed to have my four children and so lucky to share this journey in life with my husband. I always had it somewhere in my head that I wanted to develop a blog or a website of some sort so that I could provide families with an additional resource....so that parents could help their little ones become a better communicator. And as I was developing this blog....I realized that I also needed to share the stories about my life and my children....and the funny things along the way that help to keep me smiling. Whether you are a working mother or not...finding balance between home, children and life can be a challenge....I hope that my blog helps to bring a smile to your face..and also some tools to help you help your little or big one. I hope you enjoy! Kim
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