Language is a skill that is developed over time and should be practised whenever possible. You can turn any situation (e.g. going to the park, play-time etc) into a language-rich experience.

Taking your child to the supermarket is a fabulous opportunity for developing their language. You can turn these trips for the groceries into fun and games while practicing different language elements. Below are some ideas that you can consider for your next trip to the supermarket! They are definitely worth a try.

1) Play scavenger hunt

  • Encourage your child to follow different directions. In this activity, introduce concepts such as location, e.g. “Put the loaf of bread in the trolley.”, quantity (i.e. numbers) “Find me two”. You can even have him/her follow longer and more complex instructions, e.g. “Before you get the popsicles, find me a can of tomatoes.”
  • You can also describe different objects as you choose them, e.g. “The meat is heavy but candies are light.” / “Oranges are smooth and pineapples are rough.”


2) Play category games

  • Encourage your little ones to find items within a certain category group. For example, “I need some apples, can you take me to the aisle that has fruits?”


3) Play odd one out

  • Once you have a few items in the grocery cart, you can start to have child identify which item belongs to a different category. Put three items together (two in the same category and one different) and name the items for them. State each one’s category then have your child identify which one does not belong. For example: “I have some milk, some juice, and a loaf of bread. Which one is not the same?”


4) Play ‘I Spy’

  • Turn looking for grocery items into an “I spy” game by taking turns to give clues about a secret pre-chosen item. For example, “I’m thinking of something that is red, round, crunchy, and it is a type of fruit.”; “I want something that comes from cows, is white in colour, and it’s a type of drink.”


Try the above activities and make your next trip to the supermarket full of language and learning! But ultimately, remember to have fun!