There are monsters in my speech therapy room.
I’m ready for Halloween in my speech therapy room, with bats and ghosts and pumpkins galore. But this week, the monsters moved in.
Monsters have been here before, helping us to learn prepositions, concepts and telling us stories. But this time the monster was big and green and had sharp teeth. He came in when we read a favorite storybook of mine, Go Away Big Green Monster by Ed Emberly.
Go Away, Big Green Monster is a great book for Halloween speech therapy.
I read Go Away, Big Green Monster to my preschool and kindergarten students every year. I try to read it at Halloween because of the fun monster theme, but it’s a great story for any time of year. It does not mention Halloween, so it could be appropriate for those settings where Halloween activities are not encouraged.
The monster theme helps children face their fears.
When you use not-too-scary monsters it’s really fun. Every child has had fears, and monsters are a way for children to express and their fears and face them. With this book, they can even make them disappear!
The Go Away Big Green Monster story begins by telling us the big green monster has two big yellow eyes.
Work on body parts and adjectives with Go Away Big Green Monster
The monster adds eyes, mouth, teeth, nose, ears, face, and hair as you turn the pages. He looks scarier as you go. The body parts have wonderful descriptions, creating an opportunity to work on adjectives: big, long, sharp, squiggly, scraggly.
I snagged this set at a garage sale, and unfortunately, have not been able to find another. Let me know if you find it!
Use the “I’m wondering” strategy
Make comments and ask questions as you read. Use the “I’m wondering” strategy to make a comment, and children will be anxious to participate and enlighten you. “Oooh, I’m wondering how those teeth feel. Sharp? I think you’re right. What else can we think of that’s sharp? What do you think scraggly means?”
We also talk about feelings when we read this book. Is the green face scary? What else is scary? Are spiders scary? Are bunny rabbits scary?
After the monster has fully appeared, children can practice telling him to “go away” on each page. It gives them a wonderful feeling of control and empowerment to tell that monster to leave, they love this part!
The phrase “Go away….” repeats, offering multiple opportunities to use initial /g/. Each page describes a body part, encouraging children to use 5-word sentences to re-tell the story. “Go away, sharp white teeth.”
Children love re-telling the Go Away Big Green Monster story.
You can find these free printable storybook pieces at KizClub.
If you don’t have the budget for that, you may want to make this simple set from a few pieces of felt. It was pretty easy and inexpensive.
Monster art activities offer plenty of opportunities for requesting and sentence construction.
Make a construction paper Big Green Monster.
The first one simply requires glue and construction paper. I pre-cut the body parts and put them in the bags. The children have to request what they need. I don’t limit them to the colors in the book. Let them be creative!
Pinking shears make great scraggly hair, and a hole punch will make lots of little black circles for the pupils in the eyes, or just draw them on.
Try painting with this monster project.
5. Now open it up. You will have two sides. Symmetry anyone?
Go Away Big Green Monster Book Companion
I’m excited to share my new book companion for this wonderful story. I wanted additional opportunities to target speech and language, so I created these monstrously fun activities. Take a peek!
Work on final s-blends and syntax.
There are round cards for final /ps/, /ts/ and /ks/. Put the silly items in the monster’s tummy, and say the sentence.
My children loved this activity today. You will also work on plurals, third person singular, and irregular past tense “ate” with these hungry monsters.
Practice articulation and sorting by categories with Go Away Big Green Monster.
There are colorful cards for articulation of initial /m/ and initial and final /g/. The cards double as a category sorting opportunity with this mat.
Say the sentence as you smash the dough
Expand sentences and practice articulation at the sentence level, as you smash the balls of dough on these smash mats. This was a big hit in my room. (no pun intended)
Wh questions, Yes/ no questions, story comprehension, object function, prepositional concepts, and an open-ended game too.
You’ll find cards for many targets. You can use them as you play Chomp! This is a fun open-ended spinner game. Use candy corn for teeth, or the included “teeth” to place on the squares in the monster’s mouth. Be the first to collect a mouthful of teeth. Hope he doesn’t bite!
Have a monstrously good time.
Want more monster theme ideas? There’s more fun for you here: Incredibly Fun and Easy Preschool Speech Therapy Activities: Monster Theme