Wednesday, November 7, 2018

Merry Christmas, Mouse Speech Therapy Ideas

It's Wild About Books Wednesday! If you're new around here, on many Wednesdays I stop in to talk about how you can use a given book in speech-language therapy! I adore literacy-based therapy, because there are so many different goals you can tackle with any book!
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Let's talk about Merry Christmas, Mouse by Lauran Numeroff! I adore the If You Give a.... series! Mouse is back for some Christmas fun! This is a very simple story about Mouse decorating a Christmas tree! It starts with one star, then two angels, and so on! There are many communication goals you can address with this story!

1) Quantitative Concepts - Ask how many rockets are on the tree? You can also work on more and less! Example: There are more rockets than angels or there are less reindeer than toy soldiers!
2) Numerical Adjectives - one angel, nine mittens, etc.. This is a great book to practice using numerical adjectives! You can then go around your speech room and talk about how many you have of different things (example: one tape dispenser, one stapler, five pencils, etc)
3) Plurals - This is such a great book to discuss singular vs. plural. There is only one angel (so that word is singular) and all of the other words are plural, because there are more than one!
4) Irregular Plurals - This book also demonstrates the usage of irregular plurals (ex. four reindeer, five snowmen, and eight elves)
5) Sequencing - Talk about what mouse put on the tree first, second, third, etc
6) Compare/Contrast - You can compare/contrast the different ornaments that Mouse puts on the tree! you can also compare this story to Happy Easter, Mouse or Happy Valentine's Day, Mouse!
7) Describing - You can work on describing all of the different ornaments! There is a really nice variety (ex. rockets and snowmen).
8) Inferencing - Near the end of the story it says "only a hundred more to go!" and shows an enormous pile of ornaments! There are some cookie ornaments too! If you have read If You Give a Mouse a Cookie to your students, they can infer what Mouse's favorite ornament is! Also, on the very last page Mouse looks extremely worried and the Christmas tree is tilting! This is a great opportunity to practice inferencing! Why is he worried? Why is the tree tilting?
9) Articulation - This is a great book to use to practice final /s/! It's loaded with /s/ words (ex. mouse, robots, etc)
10) Following Directions - You can draw a Christmas tree on a mini dry erase board and then give your students instructions for drawing on more ornaments! You could also bring in a mini Christmas tree and have students practicing following directions with a variety of ornaments! This would be such a fun way to bring this book to life!

Have you ever used this book in therapy? What skill did you address? Please leave a comment and let me know!

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Thank you for stopping by! Have a wonderful day!

Friday, November 2, 2018

November Literature Flip Books

Wow! Can you believe it's already time to talk about November's Flipping for Literature packet?! This year is truly going by so fast! Let's take a peek at my book recommendations for November!
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Duck for President by Doreen Cronin
I just love Doreen Cronin's farm books! This one features Duck (the real star of Click, Clack, Moo! haha) and he's fed up with his barnyard chores! He's tired of mowing the lawn, grinding coffee beans, and taking out the trash! Duck decides to overthrow Farmer Brown and organizes an election! He wins by a landslide, but quickly learns that leading a farm is very hard work - so he decides to run for governor instead! haha... He works his way up right to the White House only to discover that being President is very hard work too! What's a duck to do?

This is a fun book to read during election time! You can use it to compare/contrast governors and presidents. It's also a great book to talk about the varying levels of government!

Turk and Runt by Lisa Wheeler
This is my favorite turkey themed book! Turk is the biggest and strongest turkey on the farm and his parents are constantly fawning over him! They know that each November, visitors come from far and wide to select a turkey from Wishbone's farm. His parents believe this is a prestigious honor (maybe he's getting selected to play football), but his younger brother, Runt, knows better! Each time someone goes to select Turk, his brother Runt acts crazy and sabotages it! Eventually, his family realizes that he's just trying to save Turk from getting cooked! It's such an adorable story!

This book can be used to compare/contrast (Turk and Runt), to work on sequencing, describing, and much more!

Turkey Trouble by Wendi Silvano
I adore the Turkey series! Turkey is in major trouble - Farmer Jake wants to cook him for Thanksgiving dinner! He disguises himself as various barn animals in hopes that he won't be recognized. He finds the perfect solution by the end of the story - he orders Farmer Jake's family pizza! This is such a cute story! It's great for working on problem solving, sequencing, describing, comparing/contrasting, and more!

Strega Nona by Tomie dePaola
I love Strega Nona and Big Anthony! They're two of my favorite characters! Big Anthony starts working for Strega Nona and he overhears her chanting a spell with her magical pot! He tells the townspeople and they don't believe him! When she goes out of town, Big Anthony performs the spell himself and accidentally floods the town with pasta! The townspeople are angry and want to punish Big Anthony. Of course, Strega Nona saves the day and suggests that Big Anthony should have to eat all of the pasta himself. haha! This is a great book to read year round! It's also a great book to use if you can't read a traditional Thanksgiving story in your classroom, because Big Anthony has a pasta feast!
Literature Flip Books are a fun and interactive way to practice a variety of language skills - such as sequencing, comparing/contrasting, and comprehension! These companions also come with mini booklets that target story elements, retelling, and more!
These flip books also come in a year long bundle! It's 50% off and a great way to collect all 52 literature flip books and booklets! These were a big hit with my students and hundreds of teachers & SLPs have told me how much their students enjoy them! A few teachers even use them as Friday "treats," which is such an adorable idea!
Thank you for stopping by! Have a wonderful day!

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Pumpkin Books for Speech Therapy

"I'm so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers." - L.M. Montgomery

October is truly my favorite therapy month. I love all things fall and Halloween - especially pumpkins! I don't drink pumpkin spice lattes, but I do eat pumpkin spice donuts and read pumpkin themed books! Today, I'm rounding up some fun read alouds that you can use this fall or Halloween in your therapy sessions!
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The Biggest Pumpkin Ever by Steven Kroll
This isn't the first time I've featured Desmond and Clayton (two of my favorite mice!) on my blog.... and it probably won't be the last! haha.. I do love this little book series. This time around, they fall in love with the exact same pumpkin! During the day, Clayton waters the pumpkin and Desmond does the same thing at night. They have no idea that they're each watering and fertilizing the same pumpkin. Eventually it becomes enormous! This book is great to target:
- Comparatives/Superlatives - big, bigger, biggest
- How Questions - How to take care of a pumpkin? How to carve a pumpkin?
- Compare/Contrast - Desmond is a field mouse and Clayton is a house mouse. These two characters are great to compare/contrast!

Big Pumpkin by Erica Silverman
I just love this story! A witch wants some pumpkin pie, so she plants a pumpkin seed! She waters the plant and it eventually becomes gigantic! It's so big that she can't pull it off the vine. Along comes a ghost, who declares that he's stronger than her and he tries to pull it off the vine. He can't either! Then a variety of other Halloween creatures stop by and try to help, but to no avail! Finally, with the help of a teeny tiny bat they are able to get the pumpkin off of the vine and make some pie! It's such a cute story and I love how it's written in a pattern! You can use this book to target:
- Sequencing - First the ghost came along, then a vampire, etc
- Problem Solving - How did they finally get it off the vine? They had to work together!
- Synonyms - I think it would be fun to have students come up with other words for "big." You can get some orange post-its and write a different synonym on each one!

Pumpkin Jack by Will Hubbell
This is the sweetest story! Tim names his jack-o'-lantern Jack. After Halloween, he keeps him in his room and watches him glow at night. Eventually, he starts to rot and his mother makes him get rid of it. He doesn't have the heart to throw him away, so he takes him out to the garden! Over the weeks, he visits Jack... and each time he looks a little different. The seasons change eventually a tiny sprout appears! Tim takes care of the plant and grows pumpkins for his entire neighborhood! This is a great book to address:
- Time Concepts - What happens during each season to Jack? In the winter, he's covered in snow. In the spring, he's just a pile of seeds.
- Sequencing - Use this book to talk about the lifecycle of a pumpkin and sequence the steps! It's a great way to incorporate science into speech!
- Adjectives - This book features tons of rich vocabulary! Fierce smile, silly face, withered leaves, etc

Five Little Pumpkins by Dan Yaccarino
This is a classic book and I love using it in speech therapy! Five little pumpkins are sitting on a gate and one by one they roll down the hill! It's cute, simple, and memorable! Use this book to work on:
- Rhyming - You can even sing this story with your students! You can work on finding all of the rhyming words.
- Sequencing - Work on the words first, second, third, fourth, and fifth! This is an easy book to use to help students use sequential vocabulary.
- Emotions - I love that the pumpkins have different facial expressions! There are three happy pumpkins, a surprised pumpkin, and a scared pumpkin. The surprised pumpkin says "oh my, it's getting late" and the scared pumpkin says "there are witches in the air." I just love those little details! Students can practice different facial expressions and talk about feelings.

The Ugly Pumpkin by Dave Horowitz
Seriously, this is such a sweet story. It's great for anytime in the fall, as it spans all the way until Thanksgiving! The Ugly Pumpkin is slender and not like everyone else. No one ever picks him, but he does get picked on. He's sad, because everyone always plays mean tricks on him. Eventually, he seeks solitude in a garden that's filled with squash. He looks around and discovers that they all look jus like him! He finally fits in and is so happy! All the squash have a Thanksgiving dinner and the Ugly Pumpkin finally has a home. You can target:
- Social Skills - Talk about the things people did to the Ugly Pumpkin and why their behavior is unpleasant. Brainstorm ways to make the Ugly Pumpkin feel happy.
- Compare/Contrast - Compare different pumpkins, they come in all shapes and sizes! You can also compare/contrast Halloween and Thanksgiving.
- Rhyming 

Do you have a favorite pumpkin themed book? Comment below and let me know!

Thank you for stopping by! Have a wonderful day!

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

Turkey Trick or Treat Freebie!

It's the last Wild About Books Wednesday before Halloween! I hope you have been enjoying all of the spooky freebies and fun this month! Today, I'll be talking about one more Halloween book for the year!
*This post contains Amazon Affiliate links*

Your students will love Turkey Trick or Treat by Wendi Silvano! This is such a clever book series! I just love Turkey and his supreme problem solving skills! haha.. In this book, Turkey desperately wants some Halloween candy! He watches the trick-or-treaters with envy, but then he comes up with a plan! He decides to try on a variety of costumes to try to trick the local farmers into giving him some candy. Of course, nothing gets by Farmer Jake and his friends! 

There are many goals you can tackle with this fun book: 

1. Problem Solving - I love using these books to address problem solving! Turkey devises the most hilarious plans! 
2. Describing - You can work on describing all of Turkey's costumes! 
3. Inferencing - Farmer Jake and the other farmers always figure out that it's Turkey! But how? They use inferencing skills. Talk about the clues that the farmers use to infer.
4. Compare/Contrast - You can compare all of the different costumes! You can also compare this book to the others in the series - Turkey Trouble and Turkey Claus
5. Vocabulary - This book features tons of wonderful vocabulary words such as marvelous, exclaimed, zoomed, etc. I also love that each time Turkey approaches a new house a different verb is used (examples: zoomed, sailed, danced, floated, etc) 
6. Context Clues - This is a great book to practice using context clues. For example, "Mable squinted at Turkey though her thick glasses" or "time was running out. The animals rushed..." 
7. Who questions - Each time Turkey's costume fails, he asks "who has a better idea." You can ask questions like "who came up with the ballerina costume idea?" or "who came up with the pirate costume idea?"
8. Emotions - The animals are sad, hopeful, disappointed, and finally happy! They experience lots of different emotions throughout the story! 
9. Why questions - Why was it the best Halloween? Why was Turkey able to trick Mable? Why didn't his costumes work? Tons of great why questions to ask throughout this story! 
10. Sequencing - This is a great book to use to practice sequencing and story retelling! Of course, I had to whip up a free story map to go along with this book! I love using story maps! They're great for aiding students in retelling, as the pictures let them know what happened next. These are also great for talking about before/after! Example, what costume did Turkey try before he was a pirate? 
If you're interested, you can snag this freebie by clicking HERE. I hope you love it! 

Sign up for my newsletter if you want access to a free resource library for speech-language pathologists! Thank you for stopping by! Have a wonderful Wild About Books Wednesday! I'll be back soon with some Thanksgiving books! 

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

The Spooky Wheels on the Bus Speech Therapy Ideas

It's Wild About Books Wednesday! I hope you have been enjoying all of the Halloween books that I've been sharing this month. There are so many great books to use in October! If you're new around here, I love literacy-based therapy! Books truly bring the speech room to life and provide endless opportunities to enhance language!
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Today is all about The Spooky Wheels on the Bus by J. Elizabeth Mills! This book puts a spooky twist on the popular song, The Wheels on the Bus! This is a great book to use in therapy, because many students are familiar with the song! They're already equipped with some background knowledge and that will set them up for success.

There are many goals you can target with this cute book:
1. Articulation - This book is filled with /s/ blends! Students will enjoy practicing their sounds and singing! For instance, "five big spiders spin their webs, spin their webs, spin their webs!" or "nine magic brooms go swish, swoosh, swish!"

This book is also filled with /s/ words! Example "six singing...," "seven silly," "meow, hiss, hiss."

2. Adjectives - This is a great book to demonstrate how to use adjectives! Examples: spooky bus, noisy cats, glowing wheels, big spiders, etc
3. Quantitative Concepts - You can talk about quantity, example: There are more brooms on the bus than spiders or there are less cats on the bus than witches! Each item is numbered, for example four glowing wheels, five big spiders, etc so you can talk about the quantity of each item on the bus! Ask, how many witches? How many mummies?
4. What Questions - You can ask what each creature is doing! What are the mummies doing? What are the witches doing? What are the cats doing? This is great book to use to practice what questions! You could also ask tons of who questions too! Who is cackling? Who is singing?
5. Setting - I love this book for teaching the setting of the story! It's a great way to demonstrate that setting is not only about the place, but also the time! This story is set on Halloween night on spooky bus!
6. Retelling - Bring the story to life! Add in a school bus toy (I adore the Little People School Bus) and other items that can help students retell the story (toy spiders, print out pictures of each character and cut them out). Set all of the items up around your speech room and students can drive the bus around the room to pick up the various creatures!
7. Temporal Concepts - Before/After are tricky concepts! This is a great book to use to practice those concepts. Example: Who got on the bus after the witches? What got on the bus before the spiders?
8. Verbs - Have students re-enact all the fun verbs in the story! The cats hiss, the witches cackle, the mummies sing, and the spiders spin!
9. Compare/Contrast - Compare this story with the original Wheels on the Bus!
10. Inferencing - The pictures in this book are wonderful and they lend themselves to working on inferencing! I'll list some inferences that can be made in this book!

  • In the scene where the bus is picking up the three cats at the bus stop,  the cats are holding umbrellas! The song says "two white wipers go creak, creak, creak" but there is no mention of rain! This is a great opportunity for students to infer about the weather! It must be a rainy night! 
  • We don't know it's Halloween night until the very last page, but students can infer that it's Halloween by looking at the very first page! 
  • The mummies are singing and they're each holding mummy babies! The babies are either asleep or yawning. Let's infer, what are the mummies signing? They must be singing lullabies to put their babies to sleep! 
  • Why are the witches cackling? If you look at the picture, they're using their wands to do silly things. For instance, one witch makes a cat have spots! 
  • Why does the boy look worried? His cake has a frog leg sticking out of it! haha 
You can truly use the pictures in this book to work on so many skills! 

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Thank you for stopping by! I'll be back next week with another fun book! I'm on a roll, so I'll try to keep Wild About Books Wednesday going through November too!

P.S. Check out The Speech is Sweet Club! I've planned out all of your therapy sessions and you'll receive a brand new resource every week!

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

There Was an Old Mummy Who Swallowed a Spider Freebie

I hope you have been loving the special Halloween edition of Wild About Books Wednesday! Books are a springboard for language and I love incorporating fun stories in speech-language therapy! There are so many great books to use in October!
*This post contains Amazon Affiliate links*

Today's book is There Was an Old Mummy Who Swallowed a Spider by Jennifer Ward! This is the perfect book to use in therapy! It's highly repetitive and follows that same pattern as the There Was an  Old Lady Who Swallowed a... series! This silly mummy swallows a variety of spooky creatures - a spider, a rat, and a crow as he makes his way to a haunted house. There are so many different goals you can target with this book:

1. Rhyming: It's written in rhyme which is great for building phonological awareness!
2. Inferencing: The pictures in this book are absolutely incredible! They're colorful and fun! I love that the author doesn't immediately say what the mummy is going to swallow, so you can look at the pictures to make an inference! There are two whole pages full of pictures accompanied by "There was an old mummy..." and then students can look at the picture to figure out what he's going to swallow next! For instance, in one scene there's a skeleton that looks nervous! We can infer that the mummy is either going to swallow the skeleton or one of his bones!
3. Articulation: This book is jam-packed with /s/ blends (spider, scare, stir, swallowed, splash, spooky, ghost, etc).
4. Adjectives: "old mummy," "spooky ghost," etc.. Students can even come up with their own adjectives to describe the things that he swallows!
5. Setting: This is a great story to focus on the setting! The mummy travels through a cemetery and makes his way to a haunted house!
6. Semantic Absurdities: The mummy swallows all sorts of absurd items! This books is a great way to introduce students to absurdities!
7. Verbs - Each time he swallows something new, that item performs an action. For instance, "he swallowed the crow to poke the rat."
8. Why Questions - This is a great book for focusing on why questions! Why did he swallow the crow? To poke the rat!
9. Emotions - How did the creatures feel right before they got swallowed? How does the mummy feel? How do the kids feel at the end of the story?
10. Sequencing/Story Retelling - I whipped up a free story map that you can use with your students! I love using these types of books to practice sequencing! This story map provides students with visual cues and can help them retell the story!
If you're interested, you can download this freebie by clicking HERE. I hope you love it!

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Wednesday, October 3, 2018

Bone Soup Speech Therapy Ideas

Happy Wild About Books Wednesday! My little blog series returned last week for some Halloween fun! Halloween is one of my favorite holidays and there are so many great books that I want to share with you this month! Make sure you swing by my blog each Wednesday in October for some treats!
*This post contains Amazon Affiliate links*

This week's book is Bone Soup by Cambria Evans! This is a fun Halloween twist on the classic story, Stone Soup! Finnigan is a hungry little skeleton! He roams city to city and has developed quite the reputation for his huge appetite! One Halloween, Finnigan wanders into a new city and is delighted at the thought of a Halloween feast. He is spotted by a witch though, who warns the town of Finnigan's arrival. Everyone hides their food! Finnigan is disappointed that the town isn't having a feast and goes door to door asking for food. He's rejected everywhere! He doesn't get discouraged though, instead he starts boiling a soup in the town's square. The townspeople (zombies, mummies, monsters, and the like) all gather around Finnigan's cauldron in awe. Finnigan convinces them all to add their own ingredients! It's a delightful story and students will get a kick out of all the spooky ingredients (bat wings, eyeballs, and spider eggs!).

There are so many language skills you can address with this story:
1. Adjectives - barren, tasty, delicious, etc
2. Vocabulary - This book is filled with rich vocabulary words such as, wistful, delicacy, shrieked, undaunted, etc
3. Social Skills - Finnigan was not greeted nicely when he entered the town. You can talk about meeting new people and how to be polite. At the end of the story, everyone came together! This is also a great book to talk about making new friends!
4. Sequencing - This is a great story to sequence! You can also just talk about the sequence for making bone soup! You can also bring in a bowl and have students make their own soup! Just grab some q-tips (for bones), plastic eyeballs, foam bats, spiders, and more! (shown above)
I also found this bone bowl at Michael's! I snagged it for 50% off! It's the perfect companion for this book!

5. Rhyming - Finnigan chants a bone soup poem that gets everyone's attention!
6. Problem Solving - Finnigan was hungry, but nobody wanted to share their food! How did he solve his problem?
7. Inferencing - I have a feeling this isn't the first time Finnigan made bone soup. ;)
8. Predictions - What will Finnigan do when he goes to the next town? This is truly more of an inference, but this is a great story to make predictions throughout!
9. Compare/Contrast - Compare this story with Stone Soup! You can also compare/contrast all the different ingredients or chicken noodle soup vs. bone soup!
10. Text-To-Self Connections - Students can talk about their favorite kinds of soups and come up with their own recipes!

Have you used this book in therapy? What skills did you work on? This is truly a great book!

Thank you for stopping by! Have a wonderful day!

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