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Wednesday, December 27, 2017

10 Fun Speech Therapy Activities with "Sneezy the Snowman"

If you are not familiar with "Sneezy the Snowman," you are missing out on a winter engaging and entertaining read aloud for your students. Sneezy the Snowman is terribly cold and wants to warm up. He drink hot cocoa, sits in a hot tub and stands by a fire. Each time, he melts. The children know just what do to and rebuild him each time while offering a piece of their winter clothing instead. This is an excellent book for mixed speech and language groups in early elementary (PreK - 2nd grade), but can be expanded through 3rd grade while working on higher level critical thinking skills and character traits. 

In this post, I want to give you 10 different ways you can use "Sneezy the Snowman" in your speech and language therapy this winter. 

Speech and Language Targets:
Vocabulary Development "Sneezy the Snowman" is written in primarily Tier 1 (basic) vocabulary but does include several Tier 2 concepts that will require explicit instruction. Target concepts such as: shivered, rebuilt, swirled, gigantic, puddle, hot tub, blinked and warmth. Encourage students to make text-to-self connections by asking questions such as, "Have you ever jumped in a puddle?" You can also have them act out or demonstrate new concepts by "shivering" and feeling the "warmth" of their jackets and coats.

Syntax and Morphology "Sneezy the Snowman" is written as a past tense narrative. Students can identify present, past and future verb tense throughout the story, create foldables, and write sentences using regular and irregular target verbs (shiver/shivering, blow/blew, freeze/freezing, drink/drank, fly/flew, blink/blinked).

Articulation Word lists can be generated from the story and can include, /r, l, s, k, g, f/. Here is a brief example of ten /l/ words to target before, during and after reading. 

  • cold
  • like
  • lot
  • believe
  • melted
  • children
  • puddle
  • snowflake
  • swirled
  • blew
  • Smile

Character Traits To think beyond the text, students need to be able to understand characters and the reasons for their actions. Students can create bubble maps or complete another graphic organizer and identify Sneezy's character traits based on his actions. This skill requires students to infer based on text. Have students re-read the text, "The snowman blinked his coal-black eyes. The colorful scarf was a nice surprise." Based on this text and the illustration of Sneezy, students can infer that Sneezy was surprised, thankful, grateful, and excited. In comparison, students can identify character traits of the children based on their actions as well. In the text, "Then let's share. I have something you can wear. Here's my scarf that's red and blue. I think it would look great on you." the little boy is showing that he is kind, thoughtful, caring, helpful and giving." There are some great lessons to be learned by discussing the character traits displayed throughout this story. 

sneezy the snowman

Cause and Effect Students can identify and illustrate the cause and effect relationships throughout the text. Graphic organizers, flow maps and first-next boxes are all appropriate ways to demonstrate comprehension of cause and effect relationships. Here are the cause and effect relationships I've identified from the story:
  • Sneezy drinks hot chocolate and melts.
  • He melts so the children rebuild him.
  • Sneezy sits in a hot tub and melts.
  • He melts so the children rebuild him.
  • Sneezy stands by a campfire and melts.
  • He melts so the children rebuild him.
  • Sneezy eats ice cream and feels "Just Right."

Phonemic Awareness Written in rhyme, "Sneezy the Snowman" is perfect for identifying rhyming words, choral reading repetitive text, and expanding on word families (ex: wear, share, care, hair, pear, etc.). Students can also also segment and blend compound nouns (ex: campfire, snowman, something) and add/or delete prefixes and suffixes (ex: freezing, sneezing, rebuilt, blinked). 

Problem-Solution When using "Sneezy the Snowman" with older elementary students in second or third grade, you can target comprehension skills such as problem and solution. Asks students to identify Sneezy's problem. Ask open-ended questions such as "What do you think is Sneezy's problem?" and "Why do you think sneezing is such a problem for him?" Students can make text-to-self connections and talk about a time they had a cold and kept sneezing. Students can also infer by asking, "How do you think Sneezy felt?"  After identifying the story problem, students can identify Sneezy's attempts to solve the problem, why they didn't work and what solutions were suggested by the children. Expand the discussion by asking students to generate other possible solutions to Sneezy's problem and have them illustrate and write about their ideas. Use writing prompts such as, "Sneezy the Snowman is too cold. Write a story about how you could help Sneezy warm up without melting."

sneezy the snowman

Wh-Questions Students can answer basic comprehension questions by answering "who? what? when? where?" and "why?" questions related to the text. Wh-questions can relate to story details ("Who is the main character?), vocabulary ("What does the word shivered mean in the sentence ___?"), story sequence ("What was the second piece of clothing the children gave to Sneezy?"), and inference questions ("Why do you think___?").

Sequence and Summary Many of my students have narrative retell goals. Students can sequence and retell the story events using a graphic organizer with "Beginning-Middle-End" or with "character, setting, problem" and "solution." Using a visual organizer will help students organize their ideas for story retell. Students may also need support and prompts to use temporal concepts such as "first, next, then, last" in their retell.

sneezy the snowman

"Sneezy the Snowman" is an engaging winter read aloud many children will be able to relate to. This story is easily a springboard for snowman crafts and writing activities. If you  have used this story in your therapy, I'd love to hear from you. leave a comment below and share this post with someone you think can benefit from these ideas.

If you enjoyed this post, link to these related posts on using books to develop language and literacy skills in speech therapy.

You can also go directly HERE to my Teachers Pay Teachers store to download my book companion for "Sneezy the Snowman" and my related Snowman Articulation Games and Activities. 

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*To purchase a gently used copy of Sneezy the Snowman search Thriftbooks by clicking on the following link:  Used books for as low as $3 each

(Amazon and Thriftbooks affiliate links are included. Any purchase from Amazon or Thriftbooks links may result in a small monetary profit to My Speech Tools at no extra cost to you).

Lisa, SLP

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