Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The Whistle on the Train By Margaret McNamara and Richard Egielski

Kayden just got this book from his grandma and loves it. We have read it over and over and now he "reads it to me". It's to the tune of "The wheels on the bus" and has different train lingo. Finding books/songs that are to familiar tunes can help less verbal children speak more and expand their vocabulary, it's a fun way to increase language production and studies have shown it works well!
The pop out pictures in this book are also full of details that can give parents a huge source of narrative prompts to ask alot of questions and bridge their children to use alot of new vocabulary words and describing words!

Sunday, March 21, 2010


Sorry for the lack of posts! We are in the middle of a big move and busy finding a new house, working with movers and all that other fun stuff that goes with moving. I promise to try and update as soon as I have a second to breathe! Just wanted to let you all know I'm still here and still will be blogging!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Buster by Denise Fleming

Buster by Denise Fleming is a book about a dog that is spoiled and loved by his family. Then they bring home the unthinkable-a cat! Buster decides to ignore Betty and Betty in turn decides to do everything she can to get Buster's attention. Once Buster reaches his breaking point he runs away to a park and enjoys all his favorite things without Betty there to bug him. But when he wants to go home he can't find the way and he decides he is lonely and lost. Luckily Betty is high up in a tree and he uses her as his landmark to get back home. The story ends with Buster and Betty being friends and Buster realizing he is happy to have Betty at home with him.

I used this book to talk about how Buster wasn't very happy that Betty came home, kind of like how Kayden wasn't/isn't very happy sometimes that he has his brother at home. And then reinforced how happy Buster realized he was to always have a friend at home with him. Seemed to click a little with my little guy, we'll see how long it carries over with his relationship with baby brother:).

Vocabulary words to work on: IGNORE, ATTENTION, CURVY, LONELY, and FAMILIAR.

Digby Takes Charge by Caroline Church

This week our theme with Kayden's library books was dogs. He loves dogs so he was very excited about all of the books we picked out. My favorite of the 4 was Digby Takes Charge by Caroline Church.

Digby is a sheepdog and he has difficulty taking charge on the farm. He tries all different methods to make the sheep on the farm listen to him. He tries using a bulldozer, a tank, and even a helicopter to get the sheep to herd into their pen. But the 6 silly sheep still won't listen to him. The cows and pigs come to his rescue and tell him their secret for getting what they want, using the word PLEASE. As soon as he uses please the sheep happily listen to him. I loved the message this book gave to Kayden, that people will listen to you if you ask kindly. Since we started reading this book I've noticed a BIG increase in his please and thank you use. I always try and make a point of telling him how much I like it when he uses those nice words and it seems to really be making an impact on him! I think this is a book I'm going to have to buy for our own home library to keep Please and Thank you usage up in our house as a little reminder for him.

Along with the "nice words" we also talked about the following vocabulary words in this story- what it means to HERD and PEN sheep and what MISERY, FURIOUS, CONFUSED, IGNORED, and FEROCIOUS mean.

I would definetly recommend this book to others to read with their little one, it kept Kayden's interest and taught him a lesson, it also had cute pictures he enjoyed looking at and describing. For us it was a 5 out of 5 star book!

Wednesday, March 3, 2010


Go to Petco! You can talk about the gerbils, mice, ferrets, rats, fish, crabs, spiders and birds. Compare and contrast the animals, which ones are big, small, spotted, stripped, live in water, on land, fly, swim. It's a free, fun place to go and reinforce language for your little ones!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Word of the day

One way to work on vocabulary is to pick a word of the day and use that word alot. Yesterday our word was Vegetation. On our walk we talked about how the bushes, grass, flowers, trees, etc were all vegetation. Then Kayden would point to stuff and ask if it was vegetation, at first he pointed to things that weren't-like the sky and a light pole but by the end of the walk all he was pointing to was actual vegetation.
I usually pick our word of the day from something he asks about or something new we see and then I try to keep using that word frequently in our talks during the following weeks and months.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Lakeshore Learning Fishing Game

This game is from Lakeshore learning and is a huge hit in our house! Click on the title and it will take you to the item at Lakeshore's website.

There are alot of fishing games out there that kids love and you can use them as a tool to encourage language. When we play fishing in the bath I have Kayden talk about what color of fish he caught "I caught a yellow fish", what kind of fish he caught "This is a stingray". You can also use it to create categories by categorizing all the fish according to type and then color.