Some of the best speech therapy comes from a session that doesn't quite go as planned. When a child asserts his or her own thoughts and ideas about a toy or a game or activity, I see it more as an opportunity to teach them the power of language than as an act of defiance or noncompliance. In this first example, I worked with a child on following directions to place the different parts on the snowman. I love the end result of her creativity! While she chose to put some of the pieces in unique places of her own choosing, I was able to elicit some new descriptive vocabulary and word combinations as we labeled his "snowflake eyes" and "big button cheeks" and laughed about the scarf blowing in his face!
And when we worked on placing snowman figures "in," "on," and "under" various locations, she had strong opinions that the figures each be assigned "in" a different location and were not to come "out" again! Some snowman stickers quickly came to my rescue as she happily followed my directions to place them in some of the other target positions. And when she wanted to drive the vehicles around, we had the perfect opportunity to drive them under and around the large snowman we made! Following the child's lead in this way can often lead to the best communication with your child! Remember that communication is a two-way street and to go with the flow as they say!