Lip & Tongue Exercises

You will need:

  • Toilet paper
  • Ping-pong ball
  • Whistle
  • Candles
  • Straws – thick and thin
  • Jam/peanut butter/honey
  • Sprinkles
  • Smarties
  • Lipstick
  • Spoon

Tongue Exercises

We use our tongue for chewing, licking, swallowing and to make different speech sounds. The tongue needs to move very quickly in lots of directions – so we need to give it lots of practice.

Try the following tongue exercises:

  1. Licking from a plate. Using sprinkles/jam/peanut butter, try to stick out your tongue and pick up the food. The plate must stay on the table. Only move your tongue, not your head!
  2. Licking from a spoon. Wet the end and stick it into the sprinkles. First, hold the spoon quite close and see if the tongue will reach. Then try moving the spoon, first to one side and then the other. Encourage the tongue to move.
  3. Licking food from lips. Put peanut butter or jam around the mouth. Encourage licking to remove food. Try for upward, downward and sideways movement.
  4. Copying tongue movements in a mirror. Try making silly faces by sticking your tongue out and copy each other. Encourage quicker movement of the tongue by changing faces quickly. Try touching your nose and your chin with your tongue!


  • Try to do these exercises every day for 5 -10 minutes.
  • Make it fun.
  • Don't force your child to do the exercises.

Lip Exercises

The lips are important. You use your lips for:

  • swallowing
  • making speech sounds
  • controlling dribbling/drooling

We need to do lip exercises to encourage the lips to move from one position to another and to practice opening and closing them.

Try the following lip exercises:

Lip Rounding

Blowing – this will help lip rounding and pushing out the lips.

  • Pushing lips forward to make kissing shapes
  • Blowing pieces or small balls of toilet paper
  • Blowing a ping-pong ball
  • Blowing out candles
  • Blowing through straws/whistles

Changing Lip Shapes

  1. With jam/peanut butter/honey on the top lip, try to remove it using the bottom lip. Then put it on the bottom lip and try to remove it using the top lip. Don't let them use their tongue!
  2. Try picking up sweets with lips only – begin with large sweets and then little sweets (smarties, for example).
  3. Practice making different faces in the mirror and open and close lips like a fish. Smile like a clown. Roar like a tiger etc.
  4. Use lipstick and make lipstick lip shapes on paper – try to do as many as possible!
  5. Practise speech sounds:

'oo' - 'O' shaped lips

'ee' - Stretched lips (smiling)

'ah' - Mouth wide open

'sh' - With lips pushed forward

's' - Stretched lips (smiling)