Books with ‘r’ sounds

r books


Over at our other blog, Speech Bookshelf we have a number of book lists for children working on articulation.  Our latest entry is about books with ‘r’ sounds.  Click here to check out these books suitable for 5 years and up.  You can also look at other book lists for vocabulary or first words users!

polly parrot rascal really rude rhino






Book Review – Clarrie’s Pig Day Out

clarries pig day out

Clarrie Pig’s Day Out by Jen Storer is a fabulous book for phonological awareness!

Clarrie is the main character – a thin, tall man who drives his car, has afternoon tea with a friend and then buys some chickens.  This book is beautifully illustrated and appeals to young children. At nearly 30 pages, it is ideal for 5-8 year olds with good attention skills.  The text is large and all the rhyming words have been highlighted in a scrabble-letter font.

The premise of the story is that Clarrie keeps getting his words mixed up!

“I go to the moo shop. I mean the goo shop.  No, no no! I go to the shoe shop.  I buy some shiny new dumb boots.”

All the way through the book, there are opportunities to talk about;

  1. rhyming words

“I hit a huge pump, stump, no! bump in the road’

You can start generating more rhyming words as an activity here.

2. guessing if the word is right or not

“A bunch of noses?”

Let’s think – is it noses or roses?  You can put these words into the sentence to see which one might be right.

3.  word families and spelling rules

“In town I park my jar under a flea.  It’s a hot day and there’s shade under the flea, no! sea no! tree.”

You can generate lots of ‘ee’ words and talk about their different spelling.  ea – flea, sea.  ey – key.  ee – tree, see, bee.

4.  The highlighted rhyming scrabble letters and often CVC words making them easy for early readers.  Why not use your own Scrabble (magnetic) letters to spell these words and then change them around to another word in the family?

And that’s the end of the glory!



30 Books for Late Talking Toddlers

We have compiled a list of 30 books which provide good learning opportunities for word learning in toddlers.  Books and stories are a wonderful way to learn words.  These books have been hand-picked by speech pathologists for their content, level and interest.  When choosing books for toddlers, there are 5 points to keep in mind.

1.  Illustrations – clear photographic images or colourful line drawings are popular.  We always make sure that the pages aren’t too busy in order to keep the focus on the words/concepts we are choosing to target.

2.  Novelty Value –  tactile, pop up and lift the flap books can keep even the most distracted toddler on task for a bit longer.  Check our list of books that pop up, here.

3.  Basic content  toddlers don’t need fancy stories about aliens!  This is the time to focus on building useful vocabulary about foods, animals, clothes and the like.

4.  Rhythm, intonation, pattern – nursery rhyme books and those with lots of playsounds (whoosh, swish) are wonderful foundations for developing listening skills.

5.  Authors – we have some favourite authors that you can always depend on for good quality toddler books.  These include Rod Campbell, Alison Lester, Janet and Alan Ahlberg, Pamela Allen, Lucy Cousins, Eric Hill, Jo Lodge and Jeanette Rowe.  We also love publishers Dorling Kindersely (DK) Peekaboo Series and Usborne Touch Feely Series.

Book List for Toddlers

(You can click on the titles to order online through Book Depository.)

what in witchs kitchen1.  What’s in the Witch’s Kitchen?  by Nick Sharratt.   One of our favourite author/illustrators.  Very clear, attractive pictures with pull tabs.  Kids love the way each page can change from something ‘nice’ to something ‘yukky’.  Do you want strawberry tea or goblins wee?!



toes ears nose2.  Toes Ears, Nose by Karen Katz.  Very colourful illustrations but with little other distractions.  Each page has a piece of clothing to lift up to see the body underneath.  For example, lift the woollen hat to see the eyes.  Great for learning body parts – eyes, ears, knees and for learning clothes – hat, glasses, shirt.



where is maisy3.  Where is Maisy? by Lucy Cousins.  The Maisy series are fun books with familiar topics for toddlers.  Maisy is hiding in this book for your child to find.  You can talk about all the things in her house – stairs, cupboards.  You can also use some location words – under, on, in.



littl piggy4.  This Little Piggy by Scholastic.  This range of nursery rhyme puppet mitts is another of our favourites.  You can put the puppet on your hand or your toddler’s hand.  A wonderful way to keep your child entertained whilst listening to the beat and rhyme.  Learn the actions and words with the little booklet attached to the mitt.



oh dear5.  Oh Dear! by Rod Campbell.  Buster has to look in all the animal homes to find some eggs for breakfast.  Each page has a flap to open and this is where your toddler can say – no eggs.  This repetition is great for learning.  Finally at the end, Buster finds the eggs in the henhouse.  Eggs, found it!



farm animals touch and feel6.  Baby Touch & Feel – Farm Animals .  A touchy feely book with one animal per page.  Clear photographic images make it ideal for babies.   Make the animal noises and see if your child copies you.




pop up things that go 7. Pop Up Peekaboo Things that Go by DK.  One of our favourite publishers as their photo images are of a very high quality.  The Peekaboo Series has a large flap to fold over on every page.  This vehicle book is great for copying  sounds – brrm, nee naw -a nice skill to build on if your toddler is not yet talking.  A higher level is to talk about the cars and trucks naming them and what they do.


ten little fingers8. Ten Little Fingers & Ten Little Toes by Mem Fox.  The rhyming and beat are very natural and repetitive in this book.  Great for fostering listening skills.  Also great for doing sentence completion.  Ten little fingers and ten little………  Help your toddler to finish the sentence each time. Toes!



spot first walk9. Spot’s First Easter by Eric Hill.  The Spot series are popular and at just the right level for many toddlers.  Big, bold drawings are great for talking about.  In this Easter themed book, Spot needs to look for the Easter eggs around the house and garden.  Great for using the repetition of egg, got it! or no eggs.  Also good for talking about places around the house – shed, tree, bush.


the tickle book10. The Tickle Book –  lots of fun anticipating a tickle in this book.  There are lots of tabs to pull, sliders and pop outs in this book.  It has lots of detail on each page so more suited to older toddlers.  There is a ‘tickle monster’ with a feather on each page to look for.  You can say ‘tickle’ when you find it.  As your toddler gets to know the book, a laugh can be had before the page is turned.


tails11.  Whose Tail? by Funky Fun Books.  A very tactile book – great for toddlers who need a bit more novelty in their books.  Toddlers can pull on the tails sticking out of the book and guess which animals they belong to. Prompt words – tail, duck, sheep.



978068985658712.  Counting Kisses by Karen Katz.  Another highly repetitive book about bedtime.  The familiarity of the theme is great for toddlers as is the repetition of the word Kiss.  If your toddler can’t say this word yet, how about trying a kissing sound?



where green sheep13. Where is the Green Sheep? by Mem Fox.  The repetition is crucial in this book where toddlers need to find the green sheep.  A great book for toddlers starting to use 2 words together – red sheep,  bath sheep,  thin sheep.  For younger ones, you can practice ‘no’ each time you turn the page and ask if it is the green sheep?


puppy pals14.  Puppy PalsThis is a soft touch and feel book (machine washable).  Each animal has a texture to feel.  The whole book has a crinkly sound to it when the pages are turned.  Great for feeling, pulling and listening to animal noises.



pants15. Pants.  This delightful, colourful book is engaging.  On each page is a different person or animal wearing underpants!  Of course, they are silly and most children like to talk about pants!  There are camels with pants on the hump, zebras with pants on the head and so on….


busy park16.  Busy Park.  Children can look at all the familiar things in the park and move the tabs.  The see-saw can go up and down,  the gate can close.  Great for active toddlers who need help to keep attention a bit longer.



17. Who Says Moo?  by Ja9781843226796ne Wolfe.  This book is great for younger children learning animal noises.  Tabs at the side of the book can be pulled to reveal another animal so the variety is especially appealing for a more active toddler learning animal sounds/names.



18. Pip & Posy : the Little Puddle The Pip and Posy series are beautifully and clearly illustrated.  Very suitable for toddlers and preschoolers.  In this book you can get practice at ‘Pip’ and ‘Posy’ on every page.  When Pip wets his pants, there is a puddle on the floor.



one mole dig hole

 19. One Mole digging a Hole.  A counting book with clear simple rhyming pictures.  On each page there is a different animal doing something in the garden.  A mole digging a hole or a parrot with some carrots.



20Spot Bakes a Cake .  Spot makes a birthday cake with his mum.  They get everything ready for Dad’s birthday including a card and cake.  An easy lift the flap Spot book with a basic cooking sequence.




21. Buster Gets Dressedbuster get dressed is another book for babies and toddlers.  The Rod Campbell series has wonderfully simple line drawings suited to younger children learning words.  You can repeat words like shirt or phrases like shirt on.



978031251012122. Happy Birthday! by Priddy Books.  It is your birthday today so let’s talk about all the things that will happen.  Invitations, presents, party food, games and birthday cake.  Nice clear pictures with touch/feel pieces.  Prompt words- cake, birthday, present, balloon. Why not also sing the birthday song?



23. Lift the Flap Things that Go.things that go 2  A lift the flap book with plenty of vehicles to look at.  Suitable for toddlers and older.  Each page has a variety of cars to look at, so the pages are quite ‘busy’.  Great for practicing transport noises.



foxs socks24. Fox’s Socks by Julia Donaldson.  Fox is looking for his socks.  Your toddler can look under all the flaps until he finds the socks.  Are they under the stairs or in the box?  Your toddler can answer ‘no’ until they are found!



hide seek pig25. Hide and Seek Pig by Julia Donaldson.  Another quality board book by Julia Donaldson.  Your toddler can look at each page and look for the Hen.  Again the repetition of looking helps with language learning.



Screen Shot 2014-11-24 at 3.54.11 PM

26. I Can do that.  Using natural gestures to support early vocabulary development has been shown to help children learn new words more quickly. I Can Do That provides children with multiple opportunities to hear, see, say, and sign early verbs. With built-in interactive reading strategies, strong rhythm and rhyme patterns, and engaging illustrations, I Can Do That provides a multi-modal reading experience to support early word learning.



27. My Dad .  A clever Anthony Browne book with lots of detail in the pages.  Can be enjoyed by babies and preschoolers alike.  Lots of good opportunities to say ‘Dad’ and to describe Dad ‘big dad’.  A great book for verbs and action words.  Dad can jump, walk, fight.



animal action28. Animal Actions by Julia Donaldson.  This is a book in the Gruffalo series for toddlers (with a more basic format).  Get your toddler to copy all the animal actions as you read the book which is great for imitation skills.  Or you can talk about all the verbs / action words.



978074603778229. That’s not my Puppy.  This touch and feel book has a puppy on every page with a different texture.  You can say ‘puppy’ or ‘dog’ on each page or shake head and say ‘no’.



lulu lunch30. Lulu’s Lunch by Camilla Reid.  From the popular Lulu series for toddlers who like to be a little more active in their reading.   On each page is a different food to either peel (banana), feel (sticky jam) or pull (spaghetti).



Happy Reading!

30 books no2.

25 books for copying sounds

Copying ahs, uh ohs, raspberries, moos, baas, brrrm, beep beep, waa waa !

These playsounds are all important pre-requisites for learning those first words in babies and toddlers.

This list of books has lots of noises to copy to help your child practice!  Remember to praise him for all his first attempts which are likely to be a bit wrong to start with.  Gradually you can help him to get those sounds better and better!

Go to our list on for more details.

We also have our First Words Parent Guide for sale.


My Top 10 Books for Toddlers

10 Must Have Books for Speech Therapy

This is a list of my favourite books that I use over and over again in the clinic!  Having read many children’s books, I tend to be quite choosy about the ones I use.  They need to be hardy and durable for use day after day.  They also need to give me the right response from a variety of children (‘Do again!”).  I also like to have books that can be used for a variety of goals – speech sound , vocabulary building or rhyming.

My top ten books listed below can all be used for different targets which makes it economical!

1. What’s in the Witch’s Kitchen?

what in witchs kitchenA flap book with a difference. Kids love the way each page can change from something ‘nice’ to something ‘yukky’.  Do you want strawberry tea or goblins wee?!

Speech Sounds – ch / j  (witch, kitchen, fridge, cheese, cherry tart, chocolate, pyjamas, jar)

Language – prepositions (in the toaster, in the jar, in the fridge)

2. Toes, Ears & Nose

toes ears noseA colourful lift the flap book for toddlers and preschoolers.  Under each flap is a body part.  Lift up the ear muffs and there are the ears!  Lift up the glasses and say eyes.

Speech Sounds – t (toes, tummy, tongue, teeth, feet.)

Language – body parts vocab

3.  Maisy Grows a Garden.

maisy gardenBeautifully selected vocabulary for this theme.  There are fruits, vegetables, insects and plenty of words like digging, pouring and watering.  A side panel on each page has some of the target pictures for your toddler to find on the page. There are some nice pop up pictures too to keep it interesting.

Language – Vocab -garden, fruits/vegetable (carrot, strawberry, watering can, sunflower, apple, lettuce)  and Verbs (dig, pour, water)

4. Pirate Pete

pirate peteThis is a great book to be used in so many ways!  Each page has 6 cut out pictures to choose from which can then be slotted into the page to create your own story.  What a fantastic way to get loads of practice with the same book!

Speech Sounds – p (Pirate Pete, pig, purse, party hat, pirate hat, parrot, patch.)

Language – prepositions, (on the boat, in the chest, on his head)  & simple sequences

5. Mrs McNosh Hangs out the Wash

mrs mcnoshA crazy mum hangs out clothes and then everything else she can find on the line.  A phone, newspaper, the cat etc.  A straightforward sequence with lots of colourful pictures.

Speech Sounds – sh (McNosh, wash, washing line, shorts, shirt, shoe)

Language – Clothes vocab, rhyme, simple sequence

6. One Mole Digging a Hole

one mole dig holeThis is a counting book with one action on each page.  It also has an easy rhythm. One mole digging a hole, two parrots pulling up carrots and so on!

Speech Sounds – f  (four, five, foxes.)

Language – verbs, (dig, pull, pick, prune), animals vocab, (Mole, parrot, fox),rhyming.

7. Oh dear!

oh dearAnother Rod Campbell classic.  Follow the little boy as he looks in each animal’s home to find the eggs for breakfast.  Name the animals as you go (horse, pig).  Also you can introduce a negative (‘no eggs‘) on each page until he finds them at the end.  Younger babies can just shake their head.

Speech Sounds – animal noises for copying

Language – negatives,(no eggs) prepositions, (in the barn, in the nest), animal vocab.

8. Pip & Posy.  The Super Scooter

pip posy scooterThe Pip and Posy series are very cute with clear illustrations and simple story lines. They are suitable for toddlers and young preschoolers.  In this story Pip has a new scooter which everyone wants to ride.  Posy snatches it and then falls off in the park.  Lots of other animals in the park on the swings and slide come to help.

Speech Sounds – s blends (scooter, snatch, swing, slide, snail.)

Language – simple narrative, verbs

9.  Songbirds series

songbirdsThis whole series by Oxford Reading Tree is fantastic!  These early readers are short in length with decodable text for beginning readers.  However, of course they are wonderful for non-readers too working on speech sounds.  Each book has a target which is repeated throughout (eg ‘th’).

Speech Sounds – s blends, sh, ch, triple s blends, k – the list goes on!


10. My First Lift the Flap ABC

This is a large board book with busy pages full of photographic images.  The first opening has a load of pictures starting with A – D, the next E – H and so on.  Each page opening has up to 20 different pictures with the word written underneath and about a third of these have a flap to lift open.  Younger children love searching the page for the little flaps.  It is an easy way to gets lots of naming words.


Happy Reading!