This is the cutest book, and I am so excited to give activities to go with it today! If you have a child 0-4, or older child with delays, this book will be perfect- it’s a lift the flap, super engaging, and there is a LOT of opportunity for targeting language skills. You can buy it from Amazon here. Read this book over and over (multiple reads increases familiarity, and repeating to learn new words!) with your child and reinforce with a language activity!
Help your child learn the vocabulary in this book. Most of the hidden items in this book are also in the Sensory Bin I made, so check that out to help kids learn through toys and the pictures in this book. Remember learning vocabulary can be expressive (your child naming what he/she sees), or receptive (pointing to or showing at item that is named).
Nouns– Explore your house or other books and see if you can find these items: baby, pumpkin, leaves, cat, curtain, ghost, closet, bat, bowl, candy, apples, bed, witch, hat, and door. You can do a scavenger hunt, or “race” to see who can find the items first.
Actions– looking/look!, go, and trick or treating. If you go on a scavenger hunt, use the word “looking” while you are searching- “We are looking for a bowl, What are we looking for? Let’s go on a hunt” and then when you find it, say “LOOK!” and point to the item. You can also play the stop/go game, or make toy cars go go go and then STOP! If you plan on trick or treating, talk about what you are going to do, and practice! Emphasize these action words when you talk in routines and in play at home.
Prepositions– under, behind, in, behind, and outside. You can find things to hide in the same places at home, and these would be perfect to do with a sensory bin. You can also practice prepositions with a favorite toy- put it under a box, behind a box, etc.
Adjectives– special, fuzzy, black, friendly, happy, yummy, pointed. Talk about colors in this book! You can talk about your child’s “special” toy, practice being “friendly/nice”, how Halloween candy is “yummy”, and find things that are pointed in your house. Do you have anything fuzzy? See if your child can find something - or find things that are the opposite.
Other language skills:
Categories: Categories to discuss in this book include: colors, animals, Halloween/Fall, house items, food (fruit/dessert), and clothes. Sorting food vs non-food could also be a simpler category idea for some kids. There are *so* many toys you can use to help your child learn categories! I personally love puzzles and other toys you can also use for pretend play like string a farm, pretend food, or reusable sticker pads, which are always a bit hit!
Answering yes/no questions: Yes and no questions can range from simple to difficult. You can start by asking “Is this a cat?”, and if that is too simple, slowly make questions more difficult- “Do you want an apple?”, "Do cats bark?”, “Do leaves turn brown?”, “Can you dress up on Halloween?”, “Do ghosts float?”, etc. If your child doesn't answer - be sure to model the answer for them!
Answer wh questions: “What is baby dressed up as?”, “Where did baby find the pumpkin/cat/hat?”, “What did baby find first?”, “Who is looking for the pumpkin?”, “What was under the bed?”. You can make questions easier or harder depending on your child’s language skills, and you can also just model the statements for kids not yet ready to work on answering questions.
Homonyms: Introduce your child to multiple meaning words- look closely on the page with the bats in the closet, there’s flying bats and a baseball bat. Can you think of more homonyms?
If your child is dressing up for Halloween, use their costume for some pretend play! If you do not celebrate, consider buying a costume (maybe the day after Halloween and save some $$) for pretend play. If your child is going to be a princess, you can pretend that you live in a castle. Iron man can save the planet. A lion can escape from the zoo. Play with your child and encourage them to come up with creative ideas and solutions to problems that you present in play.
Play in a sensory bin: A skeleton can be the baby, and the bin can be baby’s house. Where all does baby go to find the pumpkin? Print out the pictures to go with items from this book and hide them in your bin and see if your child can find the items you call out. Can your child say where he/she found the pictures using prepositions?
Watch these videos on YouTube and talk about what you see. Autumn Leaves, Five Little Pumpkins, This is the Way We Carve a Pumpkin, Who Took the Candy, Knock Knock Trick or Treat part 1 or part 2, Skeleton Dance, Baby Shark Halloween, Go Away Spooky Goblin, and Happy Face Halloween.
Listen to songs (if you have an Amazon Echo, it makes it very easy to just ask Alexa to play these songs): Five Little Pumpkins, Ten Little Pumpkins, Peter Peter Pumpkin Eater, I’m a Little Scarecrow, Autumn Leaves are Falling Down, Five Apples in the Apple Tree, and Carve A Pumpkin.
Fellow SLPs: Click here for a FREE printout to send home for parents to reinforce these skills at home.
If this is your first time visiting Mrs Speechie P, welcome! I give tips to work on speech and language regularly on my Facebook and Instagram pages, so be sure to follow me on social media! And last, if you have any comments or questions, let me know! I’d love to hear from you!