Arctic animals, snowmen, and hibernation are great winter themes to focus on in speech. I love working on language concepts with a literacy-based speech approach. In this post, I'm sharing some of my favorite winter-themed books to use in speech. You can download the FREE language bookmarks for Brave Irene, Over and Under The Snow, Owl Moon, A Loud Winter's Nap, Sneezy The Snowman, Tacky The Penguin at the end of this post.
Winter Books for Speech Therapy
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Brave Irene by William Steig. An absolute treasure. This award-winning book is a delightful tale of a young girl determined to deliver a handmade dress for her sick mother despite a snowstorm determined to stop her.
The text complexity is demanding in all variables (especially syntactic and semantic). The Lexile level is AD630. I would recommend using this with upper elementary, middle, and even high school levels and could easily be used across multiple sessions.
- How I use Brave Irene in Speech Therapy:
Theme: (Courage and Devotion)
Over and Under The Snow by Kate Messner. I love this book because it features really interesting animals that we don't often discuss such as voles and shrews. I have the paperback version – in the back is a little animal glossary for all the interesting animals featured and an author's note discussing animals in the snow (great tier 3 vocabulary). I use this book as an extension of a hibernation-themed unit I often do in January or February.
- How I use Over and Under The Snow in Speech Therapy:
Owl Moon by Jan Yolen. This treasure is a Caldecott Medal winner. The text and illustrations are equally worth studying. I would suggest this book for students that you need to go deeper with imagery & figurative language. Although the decoding demands aren't difficult, I would recommend it for upper elementary or middle & high school students as the syntactic and structural demands are more complex.
- How I use Owl Moon in Speech Therapy:
Small moment writing prompt
A Loud Winter's Nap by Katy Hudson. This sweet book has adorable illustrations and shorter text that will appeal to younger students. The difficulty is low in regards to semantics, decoding, and syntax. The illustrative scenes on each page offer additional opportunities for language discussion – especially when working on prepositions!
- How I use A Loud Winters Nap in Speech Therapy:
past tense regular verbs
Tacky The Penguin by Helen Lester. Short and clever! This book is too cute & has a great message. It's ideal for compare/contrast and plot! The vocabulary is great but most of the text is mostly one or two-syllable words.
- How I use Tacky The Penguin in Speech Therapy:
theme: being unique may be helpful
Sneezy The Snowman by Maureen Wright. Adorable! Those 2 cardinals steal the show for me. A fun book for any age and the predictable text and rhyme are naturally engaging. EXCELLENT theme of sharing, empathy, and hello: problem-solving!! Also… loaded with S-blends!!
- How I use Sneezy The Snowman in Speech Therapy:
Download the free Winter Language Bookmarks below:
Also, check out my comprehensive lesson plans and activities for each of these books in my Winter Book Companions!