GASP\u2026Only two weeks left until the holiday shopping season officially begins! Take a breath. District Speech is here to help finish up your gift buying list. We\u2019re continuing our countdown of some great and engaging games and toys that help promote your child\u2019s speech and language! This week: Learning Piggy Bank This piggy bank may look like an ordinary toddler toy, but after a second look, it\u2019s easy to see that it\u2019s so much more! The Learning Piggy Bank plays music, counts, has a set of colored coins inside, a door that opens and closes, and has a fun, pushable nose. Our early intervention kiddos, primarily ages 1-4 years,\u00a0absolutely LOVE this toy\u00a0and if given a choice, will choose to play with this pig time and time again. Learning Piggy Bank\u00a0\u2013 Learning While You Play! Whether at home or in the clinic here\u2019s how you can use this fun toy to promote language: 1. Early Language\/Receptive Language The piggy bank is great for developing early language skills, specifically cause and effect, and understanding basic concepts. Here\u2019s how to use with your client or toddler: \tSkill:\u00a0Cause\u00a0and Effect, or understanding the connection between an action and a consequence, is the foundation for communicating intentionally. One way we support children to develop an understanding of cause and effect is by introducing them to toys or activities that they can operate by using an external switch or button. How to use:\u00a0Have your client or toddler push the piggy\u2019s nose to hear him \u201coink\u201d, sneeze, or sing songs. If he\/she has trouble grasping the concept initially, provide hand over hand assistance to help them push the button, and then gradually decrease that assistance until they\u2019re pushing the piggy\u2019s nose independently. \tSkill:\u00a0\u00a0Following one- and two- step directions, How to use:\u00a0 Have your kiddo listen and then follow directions such as \u201cput coin in\u201d, \u201cgive me the coin\u201d, \u201cpush the nose\u201d, \u201cfirst, close the door, then push the nose\u201d. \tSkill:\u00a0Understanding of basic concepts. The Learning Piggy Bank\u2019s coins are different colors and each has an animal printed on them.\u00a0 Promote an understanding of basic concepts by having him\/her identify the appropriate color or animal. How to use:\u00a0 If you\u2019re just starting out with color or animal concepts, present two coins at a time to make it a bit easier. Place two coins in front of him\/her and say \u201cgive me the red coin\u201d or \u201cfind the dog\u201d. As he\/she gets better at identifying these concepts, you can present more coins at once, or you can move to naming the color or animal. 2. Expressive Language If your child or client has a developmental or language delay, with weaknesses in oral expression, you can use this piggy bank for a variety of expressive language tasks. Here are some helpful examples: \tBefore getting what he\/she wants, have him\/her make verbal requests throughout play with the piggy, including \u201copen\u201d, \u201cmore\u201d, \u201cpush please\u201d, \u201cgreen coin\u201d, and \u201call done.\u201d \tWork on naming basic concepts by having him\/her name animals and colors with the prompt \u201cwhat\u2019s this?\u201d \tYou can also work on production of animal sounds by showing your kiddo the animal and asking them to produce the corresponding sound. Thanks for joining us while we explore the practical benefits of some great toys and games. Join us next week for #5 in our countdown\u2026 If you live in the D.C. area and have concerns about your child\u2019s language or articulation and would like to seek additional help beyond what your school based speech language pathologist may be able to provide, visit https:\/\/districtspeech.com for more information on our assessment and therapy services for children of all ages.