using The Very Impatient Caterpillar in speech therapy
Frequent Speech Sounds:

/fl/ initial and medial
/er/ final
/p/ initial
/k/ initial
/sh/ medial
/l/ medial



life cycle

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

The Very Impatient Caterpillar

By Ross Burach

This clever send-up of every child’s biggest challenge — being patient! — is a STEM-friendly, laugh-out-loud comedy about metamorphosis. Ross Burach’s hilarious, tongue-in-cheek exploration of metamorphosis will make you flutter with glee, while also providing real facts about how caterpillars transform into butterflies.

This quirky spring book can be used in speech therapy to address social/emotional issues like patience, self-talk, and self-doubt. It is also great for noticing character expressions, using varying tones of voice, targeting predicting, as well as /er/ and /fl/ sounds! Discover more of the speech and language teaching concepts for using The Very Impatient Caterpillar in speech therapy below: 

Key Teaching Concepts

Narrative Structure:

complete episode

Narrative Concepts:

text features
illustration study
character analysis


order of events for a caterpillar to become a butterfly


metamorphosis, transform, butterfly, chrysalis, patience, nature, approach, grip, migrating

Character Analysis:

The caterpillar does not know about the process of becoming a butterfly, but sees its peers start the process. The caterpillar decides to join, but then learn that the process requires patience. The caterpillar does not know how to be patient.  The caterpillar finally finds a way to be patient and persevere until it becomes a butterfly. The caterpillar is proud once it is finally a butterfly.


The caterpillars try to transform into butterflies. One of them is unsure of what to do and tries to follow along, annoying the other caterpillar with his impatience and constant questions. The caterpillar comes out too early then tries to learn how to transform himself but his self-doubt creeps in. Finally, he perseveres and becomes a butterfly as he makes a promise to try to be more patient.

facial expressions

Text Features:

speech bubbles
large text
exclamation marks
exaggerated vowels
question and exclamation marks
thought bubbles

If you are interested in using The Very Impatient Caterpillar and other bug- themed books in speech therapy, then check out these print-&-go cheat sheets. Perfect for when you don’t need a full book companion. 

Check out our 14 minute podcast episode, Our Favorite Bug-Themed Picture Books in Speech Therapy for more ideas on The Very Impatient Caterpillar and other bug-themed books!