Speech Therapy Toy Picks for 2024 for Toddlers and Preschoolers with Language Delays

drum girl

This year I’ve found some wonderful NEW choices for speech therapy toy picks for 2024 for toddlers and preschoolers with language delays.

I’ve included some of the toys that made the cut this year in my Stages of Play Podcast series (currently ongoing!), but these are NEW additions and I’ll be adding them to my Best Toys for Speech Therapy List. Please check out that list too! It’s grouped by developmental age range and has loads of fantastic information for you to help you choose the right toys and make your work – and their play – easier and more fun for the both of you.

In this post, I’m listing individual toys along with a few ideas to get you started teaching language, both at home and in clinical settings.

You’ll also find Amazon links to each toy to streamline your shopping. As an Amazon affiliate, we earn a small commission from these purchases. It’s a great way to support our work at teachmetotalk.com – especially if you’re looking to add to your toy inventory or shop for children for the holidays.

Happy Shopping!

 

Santa Wobbler

I LOVE this cute wobbler toy for our youngest friends in speech therapy. It’s perfect for babies who are working on tummy time, using their hands and playing purposefully, and it’s a good choice for teaching the beginning levels of cause and effect and intentionality when a child is beginning to play. If you’d like other Christmas themed toys, check out this list.

 

Lollipop Drum

Music toys are always fun for toddlers, and I love this lollipop drum set. I teach early imitation with this all… the… time.


If you’re looking for more of a music set, here’s a good option too. My favorite thing to do with this is to have a parade – even if it’s just mom, a kid, and me.

 

 

 

iPlay Cars

I found these cars a couple of months ago and they have become one of my all-time favorite toys! They’re so easy for little hands to push — great for teaching functional play and cause and effect! For language, I like working on lots of play sounds – vehicle sounds like a motor sound, beep beep, crash, boom, and screeching brakes as well as the animal sounds for each car.  Another obvious language goal is using the classic verbal routine… “Ready Set Go!”

 

Community Helper Blocks

This Montessori inspired block set is like my favorite set of blocks on this list, but instead of farm animals, the blocks include cars, trucks, and people making it a fantastic choice for expanding a child’s vocabulary and play skills.

 

Melissa and Doug Barn Puzzle

I love this half puzzle/half shape sorter toy. It’s a great step for kids who aren’t doing puzzles yet. For minimally verbal kids, work on animal sounds. For receptive language, target animal names as in “Show me the pig.” or “Find the one that says ‘oink.’ ”

Talking Cactus

I usually detest voice-activated toys because they usually don’t work, but this one does! It’s tacky for sure, and I don’t care for the packaged songs, BUT it detects and repeats a child’s vocalizations pretty well — if the child is close enough to the microphone. Hearing their own voices can be very reinforcing for many quiet toddlers.

 

Bilbo

This is a fabulous choice for inside gross motor play. One of my favorite quotes a darling 3 year old said to me when he played with this toy the first time was … “This is so fun!”  What an endorsement! Use it between other “sit down” activities to help a child regulate and get to his “just right place” for listening and learning. Play “Row Row Your Boat” by taking a child’s hands as he sits in the Bilbo and rock him as you sing the song. Most toddlers love to be dumped out and you can create a verbal routine by counting to build anticipation as you say something like, “1..2..3…Dump!” or “Dump…you…. out!”

 

Toddler Scavenger Hunt

I LOVE working on receptive language when toddlers think it’s a game. These cards make working on following directions very “game-like’ and will be a winner for sure. Use it to target simple one or two-step (or more!) commands. Examples are… “Find a book. Point to a picture or word.” and “Can you find a chair? Sit on it and sing a song.” It’s a great way to teach parents how to play these kinds of listening games at home. It’s like an easier version of Brain Quest cards … which I also love! I use them to help slow busy preschoolers down to listen and follow directions. The card sets below are for 2’s, 3’s, and 4- 5.

 

 

Imitation Board Book

The SLP author of this darling book emailed me to tell me that my levels of imitation from Building Verbal Imitation in Toddlers was the inspiration for this super cute way to target teaching a child to imitate. I love it and I know you will too!

 

Basketball Hoop

If you work in an office setting and don’t have a toddler basketball goal, order this one now! I have used mine for every kind of a child from helping busy toddlers learn to complete (and stay with me!) during a beginning play routine, for verbal routines… “1, 2, 3… Shoot!”… and for a vital part of an obstacle course for older toddlers and preschoolers. Pair it with a slide and/or tunnel and you have a inside “sensory gym” of your own, great for our most active friends who need to move regardless of the weather! So many moms I’ve worked with have found a way to squeeze these into their homes to bring outside play indoors for the winter.

Crayons and Coloring Book for Toddlers

If you have a young child who likes art and drawing — or needs to learn to like it — this is a super beginning set. My daughter, also an SLP, found this for her little boy and I love it so much, I’ve bought a set to use too. The pictures are not busy and easily recognizable by toddlers who are learning language. It’s a wonderful preschool readiness activity.

 

Fisher Price Garage

This is such a reasonably priced classic toy that provides endless play opportunities for toddlers for many years. Use it for teaching every level of language from play sounds (all those car noises – even filling up with gas!), to early words, to short phrases. It’s always a big hit with both boys and girls. At the time of this post, it’s 30% for Black Friday on Amazon.

 

Kitchen Play Sets

This versatile set is fun for toddlers of all developmental levels. Toddlers are captivated by learning to cut the food themselves. I love the dress-up component when a child first begins to pretend. Target all kinds of words and play routines with this set — which comes in a box for easy transport and clean up.

Or SPLURGE and buy a play kitchen that’s not too visually overstimulating for a home or an office. I love this one. It’s been in my Save for Later cart since we moved to our new office.

 

Need more ideas? Check out my Ultimate Toy List for Speech Therapy with Toddlers.  

 

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But I just keep watching and learning because we can always learn something new! 
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