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arnosky turkey

I’m a Turkey

Title: I’m A Turkey!

Author: Jim Arnosky

Description:  The life of a turkey from his own perspective.

Goals/concepts:

-phonological awareness skills (rhyming)

-why questions (i.e. ups and downs of being a turkey, why must they be careful, etc.)

-Discussion around body language (i.e. discuss how they communicate “without words”)

-perspective taking

Why I like this book: It’s a fun holiday story.

Ideas for use:

-Have children fill in the rhyming words, or generate other words that would rhyme.

-After reading do a game of charades. The story talks about how in a “group” they often “communicate without words”- expand on this. Could act out thanksgiving theme ideas as well (e.g. turkey, dinner, setting table, cooking, etc.)

-Have children make their own thanksgiving poems.

-for older students, discuss the turkey’s perspective vs. the hunter, vs. the farmer, etc.

-For causals have children fill in “why” turkeys have to be careful…because….

Submitted by: Meghan G.Graham M.S. CCC-SLP

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Old Lady

There was an Old Lady Who Swallowed Some Books

Title:  There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed Some Books!

Author: Lucille Colandro

Description: Another version of the little old lady who swallowed a fly, but with a back to school twist….

Goals:

  • Sequencing
  • Story retell
  • Early Prediction
  • Phonological Awareness (Rhyming)
  • Speech Production (s-blends, /sw/)

Why I like this book: There is something about this crazy old lady that kids seem to love. It always gets a reaction, and therefore some discussion, and participation.

Ideas for this book:

  • Create Boardmaker or google image pictures to help children sequence the story as you read, and/or for retelling the story after it’s complete. Encourage temporal markers such as first, then, next, after that, last
  • Have students make guesses as to what she may swallow next. Encourage them to use the previous clues to make a guess (i.e. what could she do with  the pen?)
  • Stress the rhyming words and/or provide the first sound and see if they can “fill in” the remaining sounds. Can they generate additional words that rhyme with each pair? Great to pair with the What Rhymes? App, or Pocket Phonics App
  • Given the repetitive story line, there is lots of opportunity for word or sentence level /sw/ blends (i.e. swallowed)
  • Have kids create their own, There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a X. Would be great for reasoning skills, rhyming and story generation. You could use Story Patch app to make this story and even email the story home to share with parents.

Submitted by; Meghan G. Graham M.S. CCC-SLP

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PA

Profile of Phonological Awareness

 

The ProPA app is a must have for a speech language pathologist, or any educator who is working with preschool to early elementary students. Created by the brilliant Tanya Coyle (known at @SLPTanya on Twitter), it is filled with valuable information, and is easy to administer. As stated within the app itself, it was created “for the purpose of evaluating and describing the phonological awareness skills of children.” It assesses the following skills:

•Rhyming
•Blending
•Isolating
•Segmenting
•Deleting
•Substituting

The educator reads the stimuli, and the student responds. You then press the appropriate button (i.e. not administered, correct, missed). The app provides an “info” button at the top of each page which provides the administration guidelines and exactly what to say.

 

She has really thought of everything. There is a place to write notes on test behavior or patterns you’re noticing (i.e. difficulty changing set, needs frequent breaks, etc.). Information is saved. If you run out of time, you can always complete the test later, you can even “skip” sections of testing if it isn’t appropriate for your student. Once your testing is complete, you have the options of opening the results in PDF form within a program on your iPad (i.e. Dropbox, Evernote, Google Drive etc.) or Sharing it (i.e. emailing or printing). I’m really impressed with the results page itself. It looks extremely professional with all necessary diagnostic information included, description of the test, and interpretation of results. This is fantastic to share with families, and makes assessment a breeze. The Manual within the app provides age approximations for skills as well.

 

If there is any user confusion with this app, Tanya has provided video tutorials, a very thorough manual, and easy access to Smarty Ears (the developer) via email.

Why I love this app:

  • It can be administered in about 20 minutes or so. This is ideal for us treating therapists with many kiddos on our caseloads. It will be a great tool to re-administer to track progress as well.
  • You’re able to “skip” portions if necessary if the child doesn’t understand or if the skill isn’t appropriate for your student
  • The results are organized in a visually appealing way, and explained thoroughly. Easy to share.
  •  Can be used in a group or individually

Assessment has never been so easy. I look forward to more assessment tools being created for the iPad. Thanks Tanya and Smarty Ears for a great tool.

You can find their description of the app here.

Submitted by: Meghan G. Graham M.S. CCC-SLP

*It is noted that this clinician received a promotion code for this app. However, opinions are entirely my own.

 

 

mother goose

My Very First Mother Goose

Title: My Very First Mother Goose

Editor: Iona Opie

Illustrator: Rosemary Wells

Age: preschool, elementary school

Description: Dozens of Mother Goose rhymes presented in familiar verse with exceptionally charming watercolor illustrations that appear to move across the page.

Goals/Concepts:
• Rhyming and rhythm
• Phonological awareness
• Reading readiness
• Vocabulary
• Body language
• Attention to detail
• Reinforce friendship and family

Why I like this book: As my youngest child prepares to turn 18, I find myself reflecting on her childhood often. When she was 18 months old, Ali had a very high fever and croup. If her fever wouldn’t come down, I would need to bring her to the emergency room, again. Ali refused to swallow Tylenol with her hacking cough and I refused to bring her to the hospital. So, she sat on my lap in the rocking chair while I began singing each rhyme in this book. Ali did not let me stop until every single rhyme had been sung and by the end of the book, she was relaxed enough to take the Tylenol. We never made that trip to the hospital and that’s why I love this book!

Ideas for use:
• A classic book to read anytime. It’s great when you have a little time available between activities. If kids memorize a few rhymes, they can say/sing them with the adult during transitions while they practice visualizing the illustration.
• Discuss what the characters are doing in the pictures and what might happen next if the rhyme or story were to continue.
• Act out the rhymes after negotiating parts and creating costumes. Have kids use objects in the room representationally. (e.g. What can we use for a boat? Car? Big clock?)
• Create puppet shows with socks, paper bags or other materials. Have kids work in small groups and put on their “shows” for each other.
• Discuss the range of facial expressions and overall body language. Make copies of expressive characters from the book and put them on 3×5 cards. Have kids take turns choosing a card and acting out the character’s expression and movement without talking while others follow the clues to guess, like charades.
• Talk about what characters could be thinking (early theory of mind).

• There are numerous craft activities accessible on line as follow up activities

Submitted by: Jill Perry, MHA, MS, OTR/L

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swallow

There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Bell!

Title: There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Bell!

Author: Lucille Colandro

Description: Another version of the little old lady who swallowed a fly, but with a holiday theme.

Goals:

  • Sequencing
  • Story retell
  • Early Prediction
  • Phonological Awareness (Rhyming)
  • Speech Production (s-blends, /sw/)

Why I like this book: There is something about this crazy old lady that kids seem to love. It always gets a reaction, and therefore some discussion, and participation.

Ideas for this book:

  • Create Boardmaker or google image pictures to help children sequence the story as you read, and/or for retelling the story after it’s complete. Encourage temporal markers such as first, then, next, after that, last. Another website (Making Learning Fun.com) offers the pictures already made here.
  • Have students make guesses as to what she may swallow next. Encourage them to use the previous clues to make a guess (i.e. what could she do put all of the objects in?)
  • Stress the rhyming words and/or provide the first sound and see if they can “fill in” the remaining sounds. Can they generate additional words that rhyme with each pair (bell/tell, weigh/sleigh)? Can use our Talking Train app. Put one of the words on the initial engine car. Can they generate additional words in the remaining 3 cars? Generate words that start with the same sound? Great to also pair with the What Rhymes? App, or Pocket Phonics App.
  • Given the repetitive story line, there is lots of opportunity for word or sentence level /sw/ blends (i.e. swallowed)
  • Reinforce contextual “why” questions. Why did she swallow the bell? Why did she swallow the sac?, etc.
  • Have kids create their own, There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a X. Would be great for reasoning skills, rhyming and story generation. You could use Story Patch app to make this story and even email the story home to share with parents. This could be a great “group” project.
  • There is a cute craft idea here. A teacher shared the idea of using a zip lock baggie as the lady’s belly, and filled the baggie with the various objects (pictures) that she swallows (candy cane, bells, etc.)

Submitted by; Meghan G. Graham M.S. CCC-SLP

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pumpkin

Spookley the Square Pumpkin

Title: The Legend of Spoookley the Square Pumpkin (ebook/app)

Author: Oceanhouse Media

Description: A rhyming story about pumpkin who is “different” than the rest. Although this is difficult, Spookley’s difference becomes very helpful to the other pumpkins in the patch, and they learn an important lesson.

Goals:

  • Phonological Awareness (rhyming)
  • Vocabulary (Halloween)
  • Social Skills
  • Narrative

Why I like this book: Because it’s an app ($1.99 iPhone/ipad) it has lots of capabilities. It can be read by children (and allows for recording of their voice), or read to students (there is a narrator, or you can choose to read it to them). There are some interactive components as well, but not so many that it takes away from the story itself.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ideas for this book:

  • The entire book is in rhyme. Have children fill in the “blank” at the ends of phrases. Provide the initial phoneme, can they predict the rhyming word? (i.e…his friends, where they had curves, he had eeen______(ends)). Use google images, board maker, etc. to make visuals of these rhyming pairs for additional practice, rhyme generation of the pattern (i.e. rare, square, fair, etc.), or home programming. Pair with Rhyming apps such as What Rhymes? or Pocket Phonics App for additional practice
  • This is a great book to expose kids to Halloween vocabulary: pumpkins, patch, scarecrow, bats,  Pair with any of these great apps recommended by The Speech Guy here
  • Use to identify Story Grammar Elements (i.e characters, setting, initiating event, etc.). Great to pair with the Story Grammar Marker by Mindwingconcepts for students to retell the story
  • Great for discussion about “teasing” and “being different.” Have students discuss how Spookley embraced his “difference” – and how it helped save the day.
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Submitted by; Meghan G. Graham M.S. CCC-SLP

Haunted Party

Haunted Party

Title:  Haunted Party

Author: Iza Trapani

Description: A rhyming story about a Halloween party with lots of spooky guests. They get a surprise when 10 children show up to “trick or treat.”

Goals:

  • Phonological Awareness (rhyming)
  • Vocabulary (Halloween)
  • Verbs (present and past)
  • Inferencing

Why I like this book: The pictures are awesome, which elicits lots of language from students. There are goblins with pointy, dirty ears,  who eat worms and eyeballs. Perfect for kids to comment on and laugh.

Ideas for this book:

  • The entire book is in rhyme. Have children fill in the “blank” at the ends of phrases. Provide the initial phoneme, can they predict the rhyming word? (i.e.what a night, the bats take flllllll______(flight)). Use google images, board maker, etc. to make visuals of these rhyming pairs for additional practice, rhyme generation of the pattern (i.e. flight, sight, might, etc.), or home programming. Pair with Rhyming apps such as What Rhymes? or Pocket Phonics App for additional practice
  • This is a great book to expose kids to Halloween vocabulary: skeletons, goblins, vampires, ghosts, witches, bats , monsters, ghouls and more. Pair with any of these great apps recommended by The Speech Guy here
  • The characters partake in many different activities- great for children working on present progressive verbs (i.e. carving pumpkins, eating worms, bobbing for apples, etc.) or have students retell and focus on the past tense. The great detailed pictures are great to elicit
  • If students are going to Halloween parties and need support as to what to expect- a great story to model activities they may experience. Pair with a social story app like  Stories2learnPictello, or Story Patch
  • There is one clear inference at the end of the story that children can make using picture clues and knowledge. Can pair with the Mindwingconcepts approach to inferencing “remember, know and guess” to help students put the pieces together.
  • Charlesbridge Publishers (local to Boston;) provides a “plan your own Halloween party” worksheet here
Like this post, consider our Social Adventures App available on iOS or as a web app, visit all4mychild.com for more information

Submitted by; Meghan G. Graham M.S. CCC-SLP

Please support books4all and order this book from Amazon.com.  Thank you!

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but-not-the-hippopotamus

But Not The Hippopotamus

Title: But Not the Hippopotamus

Author: Sandra Boynton

Description: A shy hippo watches other friends play, but doesn’t join in. Eventually the animal pack asks her to play, and even though she is nervous, she decides to join in on the fun.

Goals:

  • Social Skills: Joining play and including others in play
  • Phonological Awareness
  • Speech Production /s/ final position,
  • Early Narrative/Retelling
  • Negation/Exclusion

Why I like this book: Great for discussion around joining others in play

Ideas for this book:

  • Great for discussion around joining others in play and/or including others in play. Great to pair with the “Joining Game” from our Social Adventures App. Help break down this skill for children and practice joining on going play.
  • Create thinking and speaking bubbles for the Hippo in the story. What is she thinking/feeling? Why?
  • Have kids role play what they would “say” to join others in play. How would they offer to include others? How could the hippo try and join?
  • A rhyming story. Have children fill in the rhyming word when reading. Can they generate other words that rhyme with the pair?
  • Lots of practice of /s/ in word final positions. Have children imitate the words as you read. If a reader, have them read the story.
  • Have children retell the story using temporal markers (first, next, then).
  • Have students create the “sequel” as the story ends with an Armadillo feeling shy. What could the next story be like? Have children draw the pictures, and try to write the next story. Can they make the story rhyme as well?
  • Good examples to teach “not” or “everything but” concepts around following directions.

Submitted by; Meghan G. Graham M.S. CCC-SLP

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Hush-A-Thai-Lullabye

Hush!

Title: Hush! A Thai Lullaby

Author: Minfong Ho

Description: A Caldecott Honor winning story of a mother desperately trying to keep the animals of the jungle quiet as her baby is sleeping. However, little does she know that her baby is awake the whole time.

Goals:

  • Inferencing
  • Reading body language
  • Phonological awareness (rhyming)
  • “Who?” questions
  • Retelling (early narrative)
  • Animal vocabulary
  • Perspective Taking
  • /l/ blends, /l/

Why I like this book: This is one of my favorite stories. The pictures are adorable, and the poetic story keeps kids engaged. Kids also love the animal noises that author provides (i.e. HOOM-pra, HOOM- Pra for the elephant,  Op, Op for the frog, etc.)

Ideas for use:

  • Great book to teach early inferencing and prediction. There are visual clues as to what animal could be making noise next. Have kids collect the “clues” from the mothers words or from the pictures
  • the body language is amazing in this story. Lots of examples for children to interpret, act out, and infer what she is thinking and feeling. Add cut out thinking bubbles above the mother’s head.
  • have kids fill in the blank to generate the rhyming word while reading
  • the story is a good model for “who” questions (a person or animal) as the mother is consistently wondering “who” is making the given noise.
  • a simple sequencing narrative for kids to retell. Use the pictures and have the kids retell the story. Encourage temporal markers
  • would be a good simple narrative to pair with “Braidy” from Mindwingconcepts
  • good story to discuss “setting” as the story takes place in a hut in the jungle of Thailand . Have kids generate and discuss the animals of the jungle, the plants, what they would see and hear (pair with the Visualizing and Verbalizing approach for description)
  • Carry over to pretend play: If a group- Have kids “act” it out! One “mommy” can tell the animals to “hush!” The repetative phrases are easy for kids to remember.
  • If you don’t have a group, use pretend play toys and act out. A simple pretend play house would work- what could be making noise in the house that the mommy would worry about? (i.e. mail man, the dog, cars outside, etc.) Work on sequencing of play schemes.
  • The mother never knows the baby is AWAKE. Perfect to discuss and model perspective taking. Use thinking bubbles and act out for comprehension
  • Lots of /l/ blends and repetitive for kids to practice (sleeping, black, etc.)

Submitted by: Meghan G. Graham M.S. CCC-SLP

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treasure kai

Treasure Kai

Title: Treasure Kai

Author: Karin Guinn Robertson

Description: An interactive book app OR available as a traditional book at TreasureKai.com but with interactive properties. A young boy, Kai, embarks on a adventure to find lost treasure.

Goals/Objectives:

  • Reading Comprehension
  • Inferencing/Prediction
  • Phonological Awareness-rhyming
  • Narrative


Reasons I like this book:
It reminds me of the “choose your own adventure” chapter book concept from my childhood. You get to choose how Kai finds the treasure.

Ideas for use:

  • Story is great for comprehension. The story allows you to be read to, or read yourself. Use the story for prediction questions (what might happen next?), “wh” questions, etc.
  • When a riddle (clue) is provided, see if students can make guesses/infer what it could be? Why do they think that? Where might Kai go? What will he need to do?
  • Play “I spy” with description questions when Kai is in the antique shop, his “secret hideaway.” Lots of objects. Focus on saliency- can they give you a clue with 2 important details about the object?
  • The clues to finding the treasure are in riddle form. Have students predict which rhyming word is coming. For an activity after the book, have them generate their own treasure story and write their own riddles that rhyme to give a clue.
  • Another good book to tie with “Braidy” through Mindwingconcepts. The “actions” that happen change order based on the route you choose. Have students retell.
  • Kai demonstrates great body language. Have students imitate/interpret.
  • There are some examples of figurative language in this story “shaking in his boots,” wearing his “birthday suit”- can lead to discussion or activity around figurative language
  • The website found here  (www.treasurekai.com) has “fun fact videos” that would be great for further comprehension and more expository in nature. There are videos around the shipwreck that inspired the author, the concept of quicksand and more. Great to use as a follow up activity…and can likely tie to curriculum concepts in science, and social studies/history
  • The author also provides “reading strategies” tab on her site. The author was inspired by her children who were reluctant readers. She has tips and research here.

Disclaimer: reviewer was provided a promotion code for this app

Submitted by: Meghan G. Graham M.S. CCC-SLP

Like this review and activities? Check out the Social Adventures App for more activities for children.