I have a very special guest in my speech room this week! He has big orange eyes, knobbly knees, and a poisonous wart at the end of his nose! Fortunately, my guest hasn’t ate any of my students…. yet!
The Gruffalo was a big hit! I provide therapy to kindergarten through second grade and each and every one of my students fell in love with this scary, yet endearing creature! If you’re not familiar with this book, it’s about a plucky little mouse’s stroll through the woods. He walks through the forest and outwits all of the animals who try to eat him! This book, written by Julia Donaldson, is absolutely perfect for teaching many aspects of language: narratives, phonological awareness, sequencing, problem solving, inferencing… just to name a few!
First, I began by engaging my students in dialogic book reading. As we strolled through the book I focused on comprehension and inferencing. Once we finished the story, my students used a story stick to retell the story! Story sticks are a tangible way for students to retell stories or sequence tasks.
Here’s what you’ll need to make your own story stick:
-Duct tape.. I recommend something eye catching, of course!
-Velcro.. I should buy stock in that stuff!
I simply wrapped the ruler with polka dotted duct tape then stuck a strip of velcro down the middle. I found some Gruffalo cupcake toppers that worked perfectly for this activity! These can be found by goggling or on Etsy.
While I worked one-on-one with the student retelling the story my other students were engaged in other Gruffalo activities. The Peachie Speechie has an amazing Gruffalo freebie in her TPT store, which can be found here. It includes all sorts of activities. My younger students colored a Gruffalo according to the book’s description while my older students wrote about the story and drew pictures. Others worked on matching up rhyming words from the book.
We’ve had so much fun with the Gruffalo. I’m going to be sad to see him go on Friday! But not to fret, I have a good feeling The Gruffalo’s Child will be making an appearance before the end of the school year.
Have you used story sticks? Or do you have any Gruffalo activities to share? Please let me know!
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