A muffin tin is one of my all-time, favorite speech therapy “toys” which I found for $.50 at a garage sale. I’m pretty sure you can pick one up at the dollar store, or most likely you already have one in your house. I enjoy the mini tins since toddlers can use them easily.
A muffin tin is really a speech language therapist’s dream “toy!” for 3 reasons:
Articulation therapy is therapy that works on saying sounds correctly.
Pick an object around the house which contains a target sound. For example, you might find 12 toy cars if you are working on initial /k/.
For young children, prompt them to say "car" with a good /k/ in order to receive a car which they then can place in the muffin tin. That's it! Believe it or not, it is super motivating.
For older children, you may have to be a bit more creative. Find 12 cars and then say that each muffin tin is a garage. The child has to say "car" (if they are at the single word level) to get a car or "car in garage" (if the child is at the phrase level) to receive a car to put in the garage.
If you are unsure if your child needs to be working on speech skills, check out our speech development and intelligibility page for guidance.
Using a muffin tin to target language skills is easy but may take a bit more preparation.
For example, if you are working on colors...all you have to do is find 12 objects of varying colors to be placed in the muffin tin!
If you are working on descriptors, you might want to find hard, soft, small, large, and/or bumpy objects such as rocks, marbles, cotton balls, balls, etc... Have the child describe the attribute of each object before putting them in the muffin tin.
The overall theme is to find 12 objects that fit the language targets.
Again - Easy. Done.
If you are unsure what language skills your child should be working on, don't forget to try our free screeners!
You get the idea! The best part is that you get 12 reps of a sound and your child doesn't even know they are working on articulation.
Below are some great speech therapy ideas that focus on sorting or sequencing language concepts!