Author: Philemon Sturges
Age: preschool, early elementary
Description: A fun modern twist on the classic story of the Little Red Hen with an unexpected ending.
- Perspective Taking
- Helping others
- Dramatic Play
Why I like this book: The story is familiar so kids think they know how it will end so they really appreciate the twist. The simple plot line is great for inspiring dramatic play.
Ideas for Use:
- Each time the Hen needs something, she goes to a store. She buys what she needs along with a few more things. This provides an excellent opportunity for generating items within categories (e.g., hardware store, grocery store, etc.).
- Once kids are comfortable generating items within categories, play a round of the Bag Game to reinforce verbal descriptions of those items.
- The narrative structure of this story lends itself to group interaction. Each time the Hen asks for help, have the kids chime in with “not I” and reinforce the body language that goes with it.
- This is a fantastic story for supporting dramatic play. Have the kids act out the story with themselves as characters. It’s important that kids get to play each of the roles to practice perspective taking skills. Using realistic props like pots and pans and a pretend pizza can add to the fun
- Throughout the story, the other characters are busy doing something else outside each time the Hen asks for help. Follow up the reading of this story or dramatic play with a game of charades related to outdoor activities. Playing charades provides a great opportunity to work on motor-planning, ideation and salience.
- The ending of this story is a little different from the classic. Have a discussion about the similarities and differences among the two stories. Have the kids generate their own “Little Red Hen” story using a common everyday sequence and brainstorm different endings.
- The ending to this story reinforces the idea that friends sometimes act in unfriendly ways, but that they can always turn things around by making a new more friendly choice. Follow up with a discussion of ways to “make amends with friends.”
Submitted by: Karen S Head, MS, CCC-SLP
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