We recently read one of my favorite books to read with young children, Mrs. Wishy Washy. This is a predictable book with a repetitive pattern and lively funny illustrations that lends itself very well to children rereading it independently. It is about some animals who decide to frolic in the mud much to the chagrin of their keeper, Mrs. Wishy-Washy. It is a terrific book to act out. One of the activities we did with this story is to create our own version of it.
We had finally gotten a great snowfall shortly after reading this book. To celebrate this, we made our version of the story using snow instead of mud. The children each thought of a way to "be" in the snow. We followed the same repetitive language pattern of the original story.
Young children LOVE to look at themselves and read about themselves. Giving them this opportunity paired with simple repetitive text allows them to be successful at their first attempt to be "readers". By engaging in the rereading of this book they are learning many concepts of print such as directionality, print has meaning, recognizing many familiar words, using picture clues, and so on.
Now that the snow has melted, we may actually make another version, as melted snow on our playground means lots and lots of mud! Isn't it great that playing in the snow and mud can lead to such a rich literacy activity?!
Give a story adaptation a try. Let your students or even your own children at home become the stars of their own books. They will become a favorite!