Tying Language Goals into Science Color Experiments

Guest Authored by Rebecca Henaghan, MS, CCC-SLP

This week’s lesson plan theme is Science: Colors. Many children love to get messy, use their favorite colors, and be creative while doing science experiments, so why not tie in some of their language goals! Your children may focus on their expressive (how you communicate your wants/needs), receptive (how you understand language) and pragmatic (your social language) language skills.

Here is a fun science color experiment that ties in these language skills:

RAINBOW IN A BAG!

What you will need:

  • 1 zip lock bag
  • 5 different colored paints
  • Tape

Directions:

  1. Open the ziplock bag
  2. Take turns with your child squeezing the various paints into the bag
  3. Close the ziplock bag and seal it with tape
  4. Take turns squeezing the bag and mixing the colors

5 Ways to tie in your child’s receptive language goals:

  1. Have your child help you find the supplies with “Help me find [supply item’s name]”
  2. Have your child grab a color for you with “Give me [color].”
  3. Have your child follow various 1-step directions such as “Close paint lid,” “Open paint lid,” “Push on bag,” etc.
  4. Have your child answer ‘wh’ questions such as “What colors do you see?,” “What color is this?,” “Where is the paint?,” “Whose turn is it?,” etc.
  5. Have your child help you clean up while following 1-step directions with embedded concepts such as “Put the red paint in the cabinet,” “Put the tape in the small drawer,” etc.

5 Ways to tie in your child’s expressive language goals:

  1. Have your child tell you the names of all of the supplies with “It is..” and point to a supply item.
  2. Have your child tell you the names of all the colors with “Tell me what color this is.”
  3. Have your child tell you what color they want with “What color do you want?” or helping them with “I want [color]”.
  4. Have your child ask you what color you would like with “ Mom/Dad, what color do you want?”
  5. Have your child tell you what color they want to make with “I want to make [color].” You can say the phrase first and show them.

5 Ways to tie in your child’s pragmatic language goals:

  1. Take turns with your child saying “my turn” and “your turn.”
  2. Help them stay engaged with the experiment by having them help you, using an excited voice, and showing them how the experiment works.
  3. Have your child talk about how the experiment makes them feel and how they think you might be feeling, while looking at your facial expressions.
  4. Have them keep personal space by sitting next to you or across from you when engaging in the experiment together. Help them ask you if they want to sit on your lap.
  5. Ask them inferencing or what will happen next questions, throughout the experiment or while mixing colors. Such as “What do you think will happen when all the colors go in the bag?,” “What color do you think red and purple will make?,” etc.

Hope you enjoy making rainbows in a bag while sneaking in some of your child’s language goals! Our friends loved doing this experiment in kindergarten this past year!