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Slime in Speech Therapy With Toddlers


Looking for a fantastic, educational, and sensory-filled activity for your toddler? Look no further! I've got a recipe for squishy slime that not only guarantees fun but also supports speech and language development. My son lovingly dubs this slime "guck," and we recently had a blast with it at our toddler language enrichment class, Toddler Language Lab in Los Gatos.

Squishy Slime Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup white school glue
  • 3 cups shaving foam
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 tablespoon contact solution

Combine all these ingredients in a bowl, mix, and knead until well combined. The stickiness will decrease as you knead.

Our toddlers in Los Gatos had a blast playing with this slime and my own sons then played with it for a solid hour this evening! They couldn't get enough of the sensory experience!

Slime is not just fun; it's also an excellent tool for achieving various speech and language goals. Here are some words you can model while playing with slime:

  • Squish
  • Push
  • Pull
  • Sticky
  • Squeeze
  • Stretch
  • Fluffy
  • Twirl
  • Goopy
  • Guck / yuck
  • Bounce
  • Twist
  • Pop

Beyond the fun, slime aids in developing fine motor skills, focusing on hand strengthening, endurance, and bilateral coordination. Try hiding tiny treasures like beads, sequins, or Halloween trinkets in the slime to enhance pincer grasp. My sons loved incorporating farm animals and action figures into the gooey mix (usually through a mix of ahh/bang/slap sounds as he plays and then "saves" them from the mess!).

For late talkers, slime can easily become a language-rich activity! Encourage vocabulary such as action words, nouns (for things you hide inside), describing, and storytelling. Engage in parallel or self talk about what you and your child are as you play. I highly recommend making this slime together; it opens up opportunities to discuss pouring, mixing, measuring, stirring, kneading, and squishing! 

Important Tip: Be Prepared for Mess! While the joy of slime is undeniable, it can get messy. Equip yourself with towels, wipes, and a designated workspace. Learn from my very sad, very expensive experience—never let your child play with slime unattended. When my youngest son was a baby I set my eldest up with some slime at the counter...where small bits of slime then made their way to the floor and under two socks and shoe. We now have three slime-shaped stains on our wood floors. Slime is always a parent-directed activity now!

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