Get your new year off to a terrific start with books that are fun to read and can help build your child’s speech and language skills. Here are five delightful stories on themes related to the new year, snowy weather, and winter fun.
Shanté Keys and the New Year’s Peas by Gail Gail Piernas-Davenport; Illustrated by Marion Eldridge
When Shanté’s Grandma forgets to make black-eyed peas on New Year’s Day, Shanté turns to her neighbors for help. This story is perfect for discussing New Year’s traditions from various cultures, including celebrations that happen at other times of the year. It also promotes perspective taking, awareness of other cultures, and connections among family and friends. Thanks to the author for additional activities to go along with the book in an online pdf called, K-4 Activity Guide for Shante Keys and the New Year’s Peas.
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The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats
In this award-winning classic story, a young boy explores newly fallen snow in the city. A great choice during winter months, this book can help build inferencing, predicting, vocabulary, concepts, and articulation. Also, Carol Hurst’s Children’s Literature Site has a useful speech, language, and social activity related to the book that you can do with your students/children.
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Snowmen at Night by Caralyn Buehner; Illustrated by Mark Buehner
This sweet rhyming story is great for building imagination as a boy pictures what snowmen do at night. Also fun for improving vocabulary and articulation. Abby Goldenstein from SchoolHouseTalks created a wonderful free mini-book companion.
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The Mitten by Jan Brett
This cute winter story is about a mitten that keeps a bunch of animals warm out in the snow. Use this book for vocabulary building, understanding concepts, perspective taking/thinking about others, sequencing, and predicting. Kids will enjoy re-telling the story and acting it out in a small group. Print and cut out the mittens and animals here: https://www.janbrett.com/put_the_animals_in_the_mitten.htm
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Red Sled, Written and illustrated by Lita Judge
A sweet picture book geared to kids from pre-k through early elementary. Use the simple words/sounds to practice developing more sound productions, words, and vocabulary to build on the story. Talk about how the animals work together to play and add to the fun. Check out their facial expressions to build awareness of nonverbal communication. Thank you Meghan G. Graham M.S. CCC-SLP and All4mychild for these additional activities: http://all4mychild.com/red-sled/
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Additional Winter Activity List:
These activities can go along with the readings or stand alone.
PreK (can be adapted for older kids): https://www.lovelycommotion.com/blog/winterpreschoolactivities
Article by Elizabeth Sautter, M.A., CCC-SLP
Speech Language Pathologist & Executive Director of Communication Works
Book Works are book recommendations by Communication Works (CW) that support speech, language, social and emotional growth for children.