Posts Tagged ‘vocabulary’

Goldilocks and the Three Little Bears Storytime Fun!

Tuesday, April 2nd, 2013

Get your child into the story with these extension activities that go along with the classic tale of a nosey little girl and family of bears…

1. Read the story! Check out a few versions of the Three Bears and compare them–which is your favorite? Why? Is Goldilocks the same in every book?

2. Take care of your “locks”–did you forget your golden locks? Improvise! Use a towel or a small blanket as pretend hair. Talk to your child about “locks” and explain the different meanings of the word. What a great way to incorporate vocabulary! Try to keep your locks (or towel or whatever) on your head as you recite this silly rhyme and do the motions…

Goldilocks, Goldilocks, turn around.
Goldilocks, Goldilocks, touch the ground.
Goldilocks, Goldilocks, shine your shoes.
Goldilocks, Goldilocks, read the news

Goldilocks, Goldilocks, Do the twist
Goldilocks, Goldilocks, jump like this

Goldilocks, Goldilocks, Comb your hair
Goldilocks, Goldilocks, go upstairs.
Goldilocks, Goldilocks, turn out the light.
Goldilocks, Goldilocks, say GOOD NIGHT!

3. Read a variation–now that you have enjoyed the story, explore other retellings! Here are a few of our favorites:

4. Retell the story!

Draw an empty house to use as your stage. Then print out the figures from here, color them and cut them out to use retelling the story! Practice telling the story with your child–ask him to tell you how the characters are feeling or what happens next. Don’t be afraid to tell the story differently or to add elements…have fun with it!

 

Can you hear that?

Friday, April 8th, 2011

 

April is National Poetry Month! Poetry is fun to read and fun to write, but to really enjoy poetry many feel it must be HEARD. Listening to poems can help kids develop important literacy skills like phonological awareness, the ability to hear and play with smaller sounds in words, and vocabulary, or knowing the names of things. Here are a few books that are not only beautiful to look at, but also come with CDs so that the poems come alive at home, in the car–anywhere you are!

Read This: Higher! Higher!

Wednesday, July 21st, 2010

Higher!  Higher! by Leslie Patricelli

A little girl being pushed on a swing has just one request:  Higher!  Higher! 

Her grown up pal happily complies, pushing the girl so high that she makes friends with a giraffe, some kids playing board games on the roof of an apartment building, a mountain climber, travelers on a plane, and many others.

Kids will delight in this fantastical story.  And with only a handful of words in the entire book, many will be able to read it on their own!  Or you can sharpen your child’s vocabulary and narrative skills by having her tell you the story or describe what’s happening in the pictures.

If Higher!  Higher! isn’t in and you can’t stand the wait, check out some of Leslie Patricelli’s other books.  She’s quickly becoming one of my favorite authors!

How to Operate Your New Book

Tuesday, April 20th, 2010

I wasn’t going to do another picture book review for a while, but my Move with Music kids’ reaction this morning to My Heart is Like a Zoo by Michael Hall made me rethink my position.

I confess, I didn’t pick this book for storytime.  In fact, the first time I read it I thought, “Eh.”  It was cute, but I didn’t see anything special about it.  It’s just about a bunch of animals.  “My heart is like a zoo — eager as a beaver, steady as a yak,” etc., etc., etc., as the King of Siam would say.  That’s been done before.

But for reasons I cannot explain, the kids loved it.  Sometimes that just happens.  Even better, this also happens to be a great book for several of the early literacy skills.  The fact that the kids loved it, well there’s your print motivation (interest in and enjoyment of books) right there.

And all the animals are composed almost entirely of hearts.  As you may recall from this post, shape recognition is the first step of letter knowledge.  Kids need to be able to pick out the differences in shapes in order to recognize letters and subsequently assign meaning to them.  And of course the kids had so much fun pointing out all the different hearts in the pictures:  “The feet are hearts!  And the nose is a heart!  And look, the bee’s wings are hearts!”  That alone is super cute, once you get past the grown up tendency to shout, “Yes, they’re ALL hearts!”

The text is in rhyme, which is great for phonological awareness (hearing and playing with the smaller sounds in words).  That is, if you can hear the text over all the shouts of locating hearts all over the place.  All that talking, by the way, does great things for your kid’s narrative skills (ability to tell a story).

And finally, this is a great vocabulary book for several reasons.  You’ve got all the different animals, some of which are a bit unusual such as heron, yak and hornet.  And the text itself is a bit adventurous.  The fox is crafty.  There’s a gloomy lone coyote walking in the fog.  The peaceful portly walrus is lounging on a towel.  I don’t know about you, but I don’t use these words very frequently, and I don’t often see them in kids’ books.

So here’s this great, multi-faceted book that I would have completely overlooked had it not been for the programming prowess of Mr. Michael.  Which leads to the title of this post.  Although I often wish they did, books don’t come with owner’s manuals.  But with a little creativity, even seemingly simple books can offer big learning opportunities!

And by the way, Move with Music is just about over for the season.  If you just can’t wait until fall to get your groove on again, check out Get Musical this summer!

Early Literacy Tip: Best Books for Vocabulary

Monday, November 23rd, 2009

A few weeks ago, we introduced you to the six early literacy skills: print motivation, vocabulary, print awareness, letter knowledge, phonological awareness, and narrative skills.

Vocabulary is simply knowing the names of things.  The larger your child’s vocabulary the better they’ll be able to express themselves, avoiding unnecessary frustration.  When your child has the words to explain what they’re feeling, it’s easier on both of you.  Furthermore, children with larger vocabularies have a head start when they learn to read because it’s much easier to sound out words that are familiar to them.

More great books for developing vocabulary!  And don’t forget to check out our Born to Read page for more early literacy information and tips!