Toys Worth Talkin’ For

Parents often ask me what toys they should buy their kid for their birthday or Christmas that build speech and language. The best toys usually don’t have batteries, and can be played with in lots of different ways. They also need to be fun for a wide age group, so it won’t be a toy they play with for a week and forget about. Here are some of my speech therapy must have toys! These are affiliate links, by the way 🙂

Up first is the this adorable Critter Clinic! A toy that spans ages, and is great for requesting, labeling, spatial locations, verbs, and animal noises. Each door is unlocked with a corresponding key, and vet tools are available to help the sick animals.


Next we have another personal favorite of mine, wind-up toys! These dinosaur windups are awesome to use for requesting, labeling, and eliciting verbs. Kids of all ages love them! I love them because most kids can’t wind the toy up on their own, so they will ask me for “help” or “more.” The toys don’t run for long, so there is lots of repetition to them, too.


Another crowd favorite for babies to preschoolers is the Doug and Melissa Fold and Go Barn.  You can practice animal sounds, labeling animals, spatial locations, and pretend play!

I use my Pop Up Pirate game on the regular. It’s a great game to work on speech sounds (say the sound 5X and put a sword in), spatial location (in/out, where did the pirate land?) and targeting “he”.

Another heavy hitter is my Take-A-Part truck. Kids LOVE this thing, boys and girls alike. I use it as a reward for speech sound practice, to practice spatial location, and to elicit natural language by having a child ask me for help. I have a backhoe take apart toy, but this dinosaur is on my list!


Another great way to work on requests is the Hog Wild Unicorn Popper White Sunshine Toy These ball poppers come in a huge variety of animals and characters, so find the one your child would love and get poppin’!

Crocodile Dentist is a great little game for rewarding speech sound production, turn taking, and you can “feed” the crocodile different foods!

Every speech therapist who works with kids needs a good Puppet in their supply closet! Puppets are fantastic for building language. You can work on verbs, asking and answering questions, pretend play, and use the puppet to reward speech sound productions. Its a versatile, highly engaging toy that appeals to wide age range.

My final must-have item for working with kids is Kinetic Sand. I LOVE kinetic sand because it feels really good to play with. I can’t help myself around the stuff- it’s so relaxing. It is fun to put into molds, to form up and cut apart, to build and destroy. It cleans up super easy and doesn’t dry out! I grabbed a few buckets at the Target Dollar Spot last spring for pretty cheap, so be on the look out!

I love using toys in new ways to work on speech and language. How would you use one of these toys in therapy?