If you are like me and have been at this awhile, you often find yourself asking “What else can I do?” The same old lessons and the repetition year after year can take their toll. It can cause frustration and burnout for both the therapist and the students. I had this exact issue until one day I found myself in the middle of Barnes and Nobel, watching a volunteer reading to kids in the children’s section. As I watched the volunteer, what became more and more noticeable to me was how engaged the kids were. There is just something about a good story. There are so many out there that are so much fun!

At that moment I had forgotten the simple magic of stories. We get so caught up on standards and goals that we forget how easy it is to use stories to help us reach our students. I started with books my children loved. As I read the books over again, this time from the perspective of a therapist, instead of just a mom, I quickly discovered the opportunity for mastering so many goals. It was easy to pull out articulation goals, rhyming, WH questions, predicting/inferencing, and so much more!  Literature based learning has now become my focus. The following are some of my favorite stories:


  • Dragons Love Tacos by Adam Rubin and Daniel Salmieri – An awesome story about why… you guessed it, dragons love tacos! It’s great for predicting and inferencing, following directions, and WH questions. It also opens the door for comparing and contrasting with salsa, soft versus hard tacos, and using actual salsa or tacos to do just that.  My kids love this lesson!


  • Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler – A great book for Halloween! This cute story follows a somewhat forgetful witch and her antics for giving lots of new friends a ride! This story is perfect for sequencing, predicting, and rhyming!


  • Bear Stays Up for Christmas by Karma Wilson – is a wonderful story told in rhyme about Bear and his friends who are trying to keep him awake for Christmas! I use this story to teach vocabulary and as a social lesson with friends wanting to help Bear enjoy Christmas which he normally sleeps through!


All of these stories and so many more are out there for the taking! Truly looking at the research on literature based therapy you cannot go wrong with whatever stories you choose. I have found that the students are much more engaged and responsive. Have fun unlocking the magic of stories!


Author: Natasha Peacock, MCD, CCC-SLP




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