using Mother Bruce in speech therapy
Frequent Speech Sounds:

/br/ initial
/er/ final (mother)
/s/ final
/g/ initial
/sl/ medial



Book Details:
Diverse Characters: N/A
Age Recommendation: Elementary, Late Elementary

Mother Bruce

By Ryan Higgins

Bruce the bear likes to keep to himself. That, and eat eggs. But when his hard-boiled goose eggs turn out to be real, live goslings, he starts to lose his appetite. And even worse, the goslings are convinced he’s their mother. Bruce tries to get the geese to go south, but he can’t seem to rid himself of his new companions. What’s a bear to do?

This adorable spring book can be used in speech therapy to address sequencing, predicting, and making inferences. It is also great for noticing character expressions and for problem solving as well as for targeting sounds including: /br/, /er/ /s/, /g/, and /sl/! Discover more of the speech and language teaching concepts for using Mother Bruce in speech therapy below: 

Key Teaching Concepts

Narrative Structure:

complex episode

Narrative Concepts:


problem solving

character analysis

illustration study
text features
verbs (action)
verbs (regular past tense)​


order of attempts to rid of the baby geese


grump, migration, appetite, mistaken identity, victim, goslings, fizzled, unwelcome, policy, stern, pesky, stubborn, settle

Character Analysis:

Bruce is a grumpy bear who just wants to hibernate for the winter but instead grows fond of the goslings and provides parental supervision as they finally travel to Miami together.


Bruce is a creature of habit and learns that change might not be so bad after all.


verbs (action)
verbs (regular past tense)

Text Features:

speech bubbles
change in font
large text


How did Mrs. Goose feel when Bruce came over? How do you know?
How did Bruce feel when the stove fizzled out?
How did Bruce feel when he came back to hatched goslings calling him “Mama”?
Why do you think Bruce lost his appetite?
How do you think Bruce feels when he leaves the goslings and goes back home?
How does he feel when they follow him?
How does Bruce feel after his attempts and at the bus station?
How does Bruce feel in Miami? What about the goslings?


What do you think he will need to get for honey-salmon?
Where do you think he will get salmon and honey from?
Where do you think he will get the eggs from?
What do you think Bruce will do with the goslings?
What do you think will happen to the goslings when he leaves them at their nest without their mom?
What do you think Bruce will do with the goslings?
What do you think he will try to get them to leave?
Where do you think they’re going?
What do you think they will do next year?

Problem Solving:

Bruce has to come up with a way to get rid of the goslings.

If you are interested in seeing other spring books to use in therapy, then check out the Narrative Teaching Points Book List for a printable copy.