Posts Tagged ‘featured’

Supporting a Child With Delayed Speech or Language Development

Posted on April 1st, 2014 by Carolyn Hart

Supporting a Child With Delayed Speech or Language Development





Since September 2013, I have been working twice a week with a four year old boy who has delayed speech. He lives in a bilingual household and he has one older sibling – a girl who also had delayed speech. It has been enormously rewarding to help this child find his voice. He is unfailingly happy and is always excited to welcome me and my “bag of tricks” into his home.

Here are some of the items that have been particularly helpful as we find ways to engage him verbally.

Alphabet by Matthew Van FleetAlphabet by Matthew Van Fleet has been our go-to alphabet book.

At almost every one of our sessions, my student has touched, lifted flaps and pulled the tabs of this cheerful and engaging alphabet book and accompanying (pop up) poster. Whether feeling the alligator’s scaly tail or the yak’s shaggy head, this is a book that children love to explore through touch.

Phonemic awareness is also supported as the author effectively uses alliteration, ‘Wet waddling Warthogs,’ rhyming and onomatopoeia, ‘Furry Lions roar, Whiskered Mice squeak, Hungry newborn Nightingales – cheep, cheep, cheep!‘ while introducing a variety of animals. Older children will notice that extra details have been added to the illustrations but not the text. Termed, Safari Sightings, these animals and plants are illustrated and listed in an afternote.

Alphabet won the following

2008 National Parenting Publications Gold Award
Parenting Favorite Book of the Month, April 2008
Top Ten Children’s Books of 2008, Time.com
A New York Times Children’s Bestseller (2008)

Alphabet at Amazon.com

Alphabet at Amazon.ca

Ravensburger See Inside Puzzle

I can’t tell you how many times we have solved this Ravensburger See Inside Puzzle together. My young student happily turns the puzzle upside down, and together we turn all the puzzle pieces over. We chat as we start with the corners and work towards the middle of the puzzle. There are so many ways to enrich a child’s vocabulary, understanding and problem solving as we talk about the puzzle pieces and their attributes while noticing the plants, insects, animals, birds and structures featured in the puzzle itself.

Echo Mic Used With Delayed Speech or Language DevelopmentRather than focusing on the enunciation of specific sounds or words, I want to encourage playing with sound and making a variety of sounds. It is amazing how an inexpensive plastic toy ‘Echo’ microphone can encourage a child to sing, make sound effects and speak. I pick up an Echo Mic and put the other one on the table. Before long, we are both singing The Alphabet Song or The Wheels on the Bus or Happy Birthday. I hate to think what we sound like but progress is progress and the plastic ‘Echo” microphone has helped us along the way.

10″ Echo Mic (Colors may vary) at Amazon.com

Magic Mic Novelty Toy Echo Microphone-Pack of 2 at Amazon.ca

As we work toward improved verbal communication, I want to ensure that my student has a rich listening or receptive vocabulary as well as a large speaking or expressive vocabulary so I want to provide him with repeated meaningful encounters with words. I want him to hear and know colors, numbers, positional words (over, under, beside, inside) and nouns (windows, doors, wheels, roof, trees, flowers, bricks, fences, house, car, truck, steering wheel). Of course, I turn to my favourite toy. Ever. Each day I arrive with a bucket of Lego . We build houses and towers, we look for small bricks and blue bricks and yellow, white, red, black and blue bricks. We add windows and doors, stairs and roofs. And I talk about everything we do. I chat constantly and now he chimes in.


From the start, we have played Tic Tac Toe. I made a laminated game board (that includes a letter of the alphabet in each square) and I use Xs and Os from a dollar store game. When we first played, his job was to say, “Your turn,” after he played his “O.” Now, he says the letter name in the box and a word that begins with the letter, “C is for Cat.” He also says, “Your turn, ” and “I win!” He has never tired of this simple game. When we first started, he said very little. Now, it is a constant exchange of short sentences and the joy of communicating about a shared activity.

Spot the Dot by David A CarterSpot the Dot created by David A. Carter
Novelty book published by Cartwheel Books, an Imprint of Scholastic

Spot the Dot is an appealing, brightly colored, interactive pop up book that includes flaps to lift, a wheel to turn and tabs to pull. Visual clues and predictable text encourage children – even those with delayed speech – to venture into ‘reading.’ My student thoroughly enjoys this book and now points to the words as he ‘reads’ each page and then pretends to ‘search’ for the dot.

Spot the Dot at Amazon.com

Spot the Dot at Amazon.ca

Summer and Camping Theme Picture Books and Printables for Young Children

Posted on July 23rd, 2011 by Carolyn Hart

Summer Learning Made Fun for Kindergarten, Preschool and More



Elsewhere on this page

Free Summer, Camping and Beach Theme Printable Poems, Rhymes and Chants for Preschool and Kindergarten

Highlighting Summer and Camping Theme Picture Books for Children

Summer, Camping Theme Picture Books including A Camping Spree with Mr. MageeA Camping Spree with Mr. Magee – written and Illustrated by Chris Van Dusen
Camping theme picture book published by Chronicle Books

An absolutely irresistible adventure story for young children. A Camping Spree With Mr. Magee is one of my all-time favorite picture books. When Mr. Magee and his small dog begin their camping trip, they have no inkling that a near-sighted, marshmallow-fancying bear will soon have them staring down a fifty foot waterfall.

They were snoring and snoozing, enjoying a dream, When splash went the camper right into the stream! The splash shook the camper. They jumped out of bed. “Now what in the world was that?” Magee said.

Both adults and children will thoroughly enjoy the rich and dramatic illustrations as well as the delightful rhyming prose. Don’t miss it!

36 pages, Ages 4 to 7

A Camping Spree With Mr. Magee at Amazon.com

A Camping Spree with Mr. Magee at Amazon.ca

Summer and Camping Theme Picture Books including Heat WaveHeat Wave – written by Eileen Spinelli and illustrated by Betsy Lewin
Summer weather picture book published by Harcourt, Inc.

What a sizzling combo! Eileen Spinelli and Betsy Lewin have teamed up to create the perfect bedtime story for a stifling hot summer day. Set in an era before air conditioning was commonplace, everyone in Lumberville is seeking relief from the oppressive heat:

Butchy Bezwick and Charley Pappas squirted each other with garden hoses and lay on the cool linoleum listening to the radio.

“Take me to the drugstore for an ice-cream soda, please,” Abigail Blue begged her father. “Please!”‘

Whether you and your child are experiencing hot, humid summertime weather or just wishing for one more blast, Heat Wave is a delightful summer-theme picture book that will evoke long-past lazy summer days and much simpler times. Ms. Spinelli’s prose and Ms. Lewin’s illustrations are a perfect match, evoking a strong sense of community and family.

Good fun for youngsters aged four and up, the is a picture book that adults will thoroughly enjoy sharing with children.

Note – Heat Wave begins on a Sunday and ends on a Saturday. If desired, extension activities could include learning about the days of the week.

Heat Wave at Amazon.comlink to purchase from Amazon.com

Heat Wave at Amazon.calink to Heat Wave from Amazon.ca

Summer, Camping and Beach Theme Picture Books including A Pod of OrcasA Pod of Orcas: A Seaside Counting Book written by Sheryl McFarlane and illustrated by Kirsti Anne Wakelin
Ocean and beach-theme concept book published by Fitzhenry & Whiteside

Preschoolers will love the sailboats, harbour seals, sandcastles and magnificent orcas. Written and illustrated by residents of British Columbia, the gentle rhymes and striking illustrations encourage closer examination of a beautiful day at the seaside.

Highly recommended

24 pages and suitable for children 2 to 5

A Pod of Orcas at Amazon.com

A Pod of Orcas at Amazon.ca

In the Tree HouseIn the Tree House written by Andrew Larsen and illustrated by Dušan Petričić
Picture Book published by Kids Can Press

One of my favorite parenting memories involves snuggling with my sons and watching the Perseid Meteor Showers. When they were young, we scheduled an annual camping trip with friends so that we would be away from city lights and able to watch for shooting stars. I will never forget the experience of sitting beachside in a folding chair with one of my sons on my lap. We would wrap a blanket around us and wait. Most years there were eight of us searching for the dramatic streaks of light across the night sky. Each time a meteor appeared, there would be squeals of delight, “Oh, did you see THAT one?”

Andrew Larsen’s In the Tree House tells of a young boy who is feeling the changes that time brings. He and his family move into a new house and, instead of sharing with an older brother, he has his own room. He misses having his brother in his room and he has trouble falling asleep. He uses his wakefulness to plan treehouses. He’s excited when his brother starts drawing treehouses and he’s thrilled when his dad agrees to make his dream a reality. It is not long before Dad and sons are perched up high, gazing at the night sky.Storytime Standouts looks at In the Tree House

“Why aren’t there any stars?” I asked between gulps of lemonade.

“They’re up there,” Dad said. “We just can’t see them,”

He explained how the lights from the city make the sky too bright for us to see the stars shine.

They boys love spending their summer in the tree house. They play cards and read comics and watch their neighborhood.

The following year, circumstances have changed. The older brother has new friends and they keep him busy. The tree house that was once magical now seems empty until a chance power outage transforms the neighborhood. In the darkness, the older brother returns to the tree house and the boys’ special relationship is revealed once again – just as the utter darkness reveals a sparkling night sky.

In the Tree House is a shining tribute to the special relationship between siblings and the small, meaningful moments that make a world of difference.

Nominated for a (Ontario Library Association) 2014 Blue Spruce Forest of Reading Award

In the Tree House has also been nominated for a 2013 Children’s and Young Adult Bloggers’ Literary Award.

In the Tree House at Amazon.com

In the Tree House at Amazon.ca



You may also be interested in our page with gardening resources

Storytime Standouts Gardening Theme for Preschool and Kindergarten


Summer Early Learning Printables

Summer and Camping Theme Printables for Young Children

If you are spending your weekend at a beach, having a picnic or camping, why not follow-up with a learning activity or two? We offer more than 200 free printable PDFs for all sorts of occasions. For summer, we want to highlight our sandcastle interlined paper and our beach vocabulary printable. When used together, young writers will be inspired by the vocabulary and will feel confident when writing about a great day at the beach.

Step 1 – Make sure you have Adobe Reader. If you don’t have it, please click on the ‘Get Adobe Reader’ button to install it for free.image for Adobe Reader


Step 2 – Pin this page, bookmark this page, share this page, “Like” us on Facebook or sign up for our newsletter.
Step 3 – Choose from any of our 250 free downloads, including these free Father’s Day printables.


Storytime Standouts Free  Beach Picture Dictionary

image of PDF icon  Summer Word Search

image of PDF icon  Beach Picture Dictionary

Free printable picture dictionary for readers and writers in kindergarten and grade one.

image of PDF icon  A Camping We Will Go

Traditional children's song about camping








Storytime Standouts Free Printable Sandcastle Interlined Paper

image of PDF icon  Writing paper for kids - Camping

Camping theme interlined paper for beginning writers.

image of PDF icon  Writing paper for kids - Canada Day

Canada theme interlined paper for beginning writers.

image of PDF icon  Writing paper for kids - July 4th, Independence Day

Independence Day theme interlined paper for beginning writers.

image of PDF icon  Writing paper for kids - Picnic

Picnic theme interlined paper for beginning writers.

image of PDF icon  Writing paper for kids - Roadtrip

Roadtrip theme interlined paper for beginning writers.

image of PDF icon  Writing paper for kids - Sandcastle

Beach theme interlined paper for beginning writers.

image of PDF icon  Writing paper for kids - Sunflower

Sunflower theme interlined paper for beginning writers.

image of PDF icon  Writing paper for kids - Watermelon

Watermelon, Summer theme interlined paper for beginning writers.


Follow Storytime Standouts’s board Summer For Preschool and Kindergarten on Pinterest.

Summertime Reading – Will July and August be reading friendly for your children?

Posted on June 8th, 2011 by Carolyn Hart

Ways to make summer vacation reading friendly for kidsThe lazy days of summer are perfect for reinforcing your child’s emerging reading skills. When you are out and exploring, take a child-friendly reference book with you and keep it nearby as you do some star gazing, bird watching, beach or nature walks. If you make summertime reading a priority, you and your child will be rewarded in September.

Storytelling and Listening…
While sitting around a campfire, encourage story-telling or pull out a book of spooky stories and a flashlight. Snuggling up around a fire is the perfect place for memory-making, spine-chilling tales.

Reading maps…
When on a roadtrip, be sure to take a map or two and encourage your child to trace your route and alert you to upcoming points of interest.

Drawing and writing…
At home, check your supplies of crayons, pencils, lined and un-lined paper (and, we’re sure you’ll want our summertime interlined paper). Keeping a summertime scrapbook or diary will encourage your child to do some writing and illustrating. summertime interlined paper

Listening…
When visiting the library, look for books on tape or cd or download audio books onto an IPOD. Long drives are so much more pleasant when listening to an engaging story. I can still remember where we were driving when we heard the amazing recording of Hiccup: How to Train Your Dragon. The miles simply flew by as our family created a fabulous memory.

Summertime Reading…
Finally, don’t forget the all-important trips to the library. For young children, look for a mix of rhyming books, alphabet books and not-to-be-missed picture books. For older children why not find some books of science experiments, recipes or art projects to go along with chapter books?


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