Auditory processing problems are on the rise, and parents often ask me what they can do to help their kids improve these critically important skills.
Here is a game I love, and the kids at our centers enjoy it, too! The best part? You can play it in the car or while you’re cooking dinner. There are no materials needed except an imaginary suitcase.
Here are the instructions for “Packing My Suitcase”. The more people you have for this game, the more fun it is!
1. You start by saying, “I’m packing my suitcase for a trip to…, (fill in the blank). I’m packing…” 2. You will name an item that you would take on your trip, for instance, a dress. 3. The next person repeats the beginning phrase, repeats the item you stated, and comes up with another item. For example, at this point, the student would say, “I’m going to (name the place) and I’m taking a dress and a shirt. 4. The next person continues in this manner. He/she adds an item to take after citing the other two items and the beginning phrase. 5. Continue taking turns in this manner until somebody forgets an item. Play starts over at this point.
I laughed with the kids when they came up with silly items to pack in their suitcases like a glass of milk or a pet frog. You can refine this game however you’d like by putting constraints on the items. For instance, you can say that all items are to be clothes or animals. You can make it silly to have more fun. You can turn the game into categories, such as everything must be yellow, cold, long, short, etc. This helps kids organize their thoughts and ideas while building auditory memory skills.
Enjoy this game as often as you can, and you’ll be surprised how auditory memory and processing skills are honed. Be sure to have the student use the beginning phrase as well as remembering the items. This, of course, won’t correct your child’s auditory processing issues, but it will help fill in some of the crucial building blocks for learning success.