Felt projects and activities are timeless. There is so much learning that can be done. You can choose to start a felt project with your little one or you can purchase pre-made felt sets that are similar to magnet boards that encourage language development through theme based vocabulary.
6 Felt Projects For Kids
If you are crafty and are looking for some felt projects that you can do with your child, take a look at some of these! Projects such as the ones listed below are not only wonderful for speech and language development but they will also help with your child’s fine motor skill development.
After these 6 projects, you will find some information on how to use pre-made felt sets for language building activities. Or just head to that section right now by clicking here.
Felt Dolphin Bookmark
This is dolphin bookmark is adorable and you could use this idea to make ornaments as well!. Head over to Activity Village for full instructions.
Talk to your child about dolphins. For example, where do they live? What do they eat? Would you want to swim with dolphins?
Shamrock Pencil Topper
What a cute idea for St. Patrick’s Day! You can find the directions for this felt project at Free Kids Crafts.
Depending on the age of your child you can either discuss St. Patrick’s day and why people celebrate it. Or talk about clovers and shamrocks. What color are they? Where can we find them? Why do they symbolize St. Patrick’s day? etc.
No Sew Library Card Pouch
This is very simple but it does involve a hot glue gun. Head over to Misformonster for full instructions.
This pouch is quite versatile. It can be a wallet that can be used at a pretend play store or it can store pirate treasure or jewels. Whatever your child decides it will be used for can open up a world of pretend play and language skill building.
This one is a bit more complicated as it will require sewing with small stitches. It is very similar to the dolphin bookmark and you probably could turn this one into a bookmark just like the other one! The full instructions can be found at Activity Village!
The tips here are very similar to what I mentioned in the dolphin project. Talk to your child about birds, in particular the Kiwi Bird. Where is it from? How big is it in real life? What does it eat? etc. You can also talk about the supplies you will need to make this craft. Discuss adjectives such as soft, sharp, rough, thin, pointy, etc.
Talk to your child about monsters. Ask if he thinks they are real or not real and why. Give your monster a name. Talk about what color he should be. As with the other felt crafts discuss the materials that will be needed.
Lost Tooth Pillow
This great idea comes courtesy of DLTK Kids! They are a great resource for craft ideas, coloring pages and theme based learning. I used to use this site a lot for materials in my Speech-Language practice.
They also give no sew directions for this which is great if you want your kids to be more involved and they are too young to sew.
Felt Projects and Language Development
If you are making your own felt creations, there are many opportunities for fine motor development (cutting, pasting, sewing, gluing, coloring, etc), however where there is the chance to practice fine motor skills, there is also the opportunity to practice speaking!
When I was practicing as a Speech-Language Pathologist, I often worked side by side with an Occupational Therapist. While the Occupational Therapist worked on cutting, for example, I would work on the vocabulary aspect.
Let’s take making a felt bird as an example. First, you can ask your child what supplies he thinks will be needed to complete the craft. If your child is unable to answer, give him some options and remind him about what needs to be done (e.g. cutting the felt, gluing on eyes, perhaps adding some sparkles, sewing the pieces together). So, you could ask “we need to cut the felt, what do you think we could use to do that?”.
You can also talk about what the finished product will be, in this case, a felt bird. Talk about some different kinds of birds, find out where they live, what they eat and what color they might be. You can easily spend an hour talking about birds while making your craft.
Remember that the language used should be tailored to your child’s level. If your child is young or has a language delay, you will want to stick with more concrete vocabulary (bird, beak, feathers, eyes, wings, fly, etc) and if your child is older or has a better grasp of the language and vocabulary, go beyond the basics! But remember to keep it fun.
What are Playtime Felts?
Playtime Felts is a company based in the US. Many teachers, Speech-Language Pathologists and homeschooling parents use Playtime Felts to enhance the curriculum. However, you do not have to be in one of these professions to purchase Playtime Felts. These are available for any parent!
I love Playtime Felts because they are theme based story boards. As you can see in the picture below, they offer a large variety of themes.
Playtime Felts For Language Development
Each themed set also comes with a story which is a wonderful way to help children work on memory and language recall skills. And, rather than just telling back a story, they can make it come to life with the felt pieces.
Most children are visual learners, so having the felt pieces in hand can help them remember the vocabulary.
You and your child can also create your own stories with the felts. Or if you have more than one set, you can work on sorting the pieces into their respective categories.
The felts are also great to target prepositions such as “in, on, under, over, above, below”. For example, if using the community workers set, you could ask your child to “put the chef on the post office”. Make your direction silly so that your child can’t predict where things should go.
Alternatively, you could ask your child to give you directions. Children love getting the chance to be the teacher!
Most of the sets require some cutting, so your child can still work on fine motor skills as well.
One Thing To Note
You may need to purchase a felt playmat separately as they do not come with every set. Or you can purchase your own large piece of felt (available at craft stores as well as some Walmart and Dollar Store locations) and use it as the background.
But there are some great sets that come with playmats. Like this large animal themed Playtime Felt set available that comes with 3 separate playmats for various different animal habitats as well as 4 different animal boards (total of 54 characters).
Felts offer a great learning opportunity for children! If your child has a language delay, felts can help expand their vocabulary. If your child does not have a language delay, use felts to encourage story telling and expanding their current vocabulary. And of course if you are doing crafts with felts like the projects above, your child will get a chance to work on some fine motor skills.
Have you created any felt projects with your child or have you used any theme based felt sets? Would you want to add felts to your child’s “toy” collection? Please share your thoughts in the comments!