Books are one of the favourite and most-used tools as a Speech Pathologist
There are so many different types of books available out there. From baby bath books, ‘lift the flap’ books to puzzle books. I could go on and on about the ways you can use books for different ages, babies to toddlers to school aged children. I would also be more than happy to share other interesting ways of using books in the future. But for now, here are some of my favourite books that I often use:
- Where’s Spot? – Eric Hill
I can’t rave how much I love ‘Spot’ books. I especially enjoy the ‘lift the flap’ ones as it adds an extra ‘surprise factor’ into book reading. This is a great book to introduce early prepositions – in, on, and under. You could also talk about the different animals that appear on each page and also give a little bit more information to extend your child’s knowledge about the animals and descriptive language (The crocodile goes.. snap! The hippo is big). Finishing off this book with a fun game of hide and seek is also another way to extend your child’s learning about prepositions.
- Spot’s Puzzle Fun – Eric Hill
It wouldn’t come as a surprise that my next favourite book is also another ‘Spot’ book. A puzzle book is a fun way to introduce books to children may not be interested in book-reading. While the book is being read, your child can put the pieces together, making it an interactive activity. This enables him/her to attend to the book while the story is being read, which keeps his interest going. This type of activity can work really well with toddlers who enjoy fine motor, or physical activities but have more difficulty participating in language-based activities.
- That’s not my tractor – Fiona Watt
I have used this book for both toddlers and young children with language delays. This is a ‘touch-and-feel’ book which introduces different textures (i.e., rough, smooth, scratchy etc.). Using and understanding describing words can be difficult for some children. Being able to touch as well as see the different textures in the book helps children to understand the concepts better. There is a whole series of these books to choose from, to appeal to whatever your child may be interested in… For children who like animals there are: That’s not my puppy, That’s not my duck, That’s not my monkey. For for toddlers interested in vehicles, there are: That’s not my train, That’s not my truck, That’s not my plane….etc!
- What noise comes from a giraffe? – Craig MacLean
This is a silly book that many children enjoy. As well as using this in 1:1 sessions with little ones, I’ve used this several times for group therapy activities and I am always amazed how the group of toddlers will all sit quietly and listen to this story. I find it helpful relating to visits at the zoo, and asking what sounds they hear from various animals. YouTube is also another way you could introduce animal sounds to children (another blog post in the making!) .
- My Presents – Rod Campbell
I usually introduce this book by asking ‘Do you love presents?’ Our little clients become very excited when I show them the book. At the end of the story I ask ‘what is your favourite present?’ This usually opens up a lovely discussion about what they like and why. This book includes a lot of early developing naming words relating to toys (ball, book, puzzle, paints) to your child, it also describes the presents, the ball is ‘round and bouncy’. A fun extension activity for this book is to draw a present in a box – you can talk about what size/shape box you might need for a particular toy, e.g., a train might need a long box, for a dinosaur you might need a big box.
I hope this has given you some more ideas about how you can have fun developing language through books with your children!