Author: Karen Katz

12 to 17 Months Concept

Bright pictures and simple text offer fun opportunities to identify fall colors, count objects and build your child’s vocabulary. The flaps on each page will engage your toddler and keep him turning the pages to find what more there is to discover.

Before, During and After Reading

Phonological Awareness

Sing a fun fall song to engage your toddler and get him excited about reading a new fall book. The rhyming words within this song will help expose your child to similar sounds in spoken words. As you sing, use your fingers to flutter down like falling leaves around your child.

Sung to the tune of The Farmer and the Del

The leaves are falling down,

The leaves are falling down,

Red and yellow, orange and brown

The leaves are falling down.


Oral Language

After singing the fall song with your child, introduce the book cover  by touching the title as your read it out loud. Explore the picture on the cover together and point out the red and yellow, orange and brown leaves that are falling down around the baby. Be sure to touch each color leaf as you label its color. Encourage your toddler to touch the leaves with you.

Oral Language and Letter Knowledge

As you read through the story, encourage your child to lift the flaps to find what fall items baby will see. While you allow him to turn the pages, touch objects in the pictures that are familiar to him and label them. You might say:

 I see acorns, just like the acorns on our sidewalk.

 Make connections between letters on the page and the first letter in your child’s name. You might say:

Look Max! I see a letter “M!” as you touch the letter, /m/… /m/… M just like Max. Can you make that sound with me?… /m/… /m/… M!


Beginning Writing

After you finish your story, help your little one warm up his fine motor skills by gathering finger paints and exploring the fall colors you saw in the book. Make sure to connect the colors of your paint with the colors in the book. You might say:

You’ve got orange paint on your fingers, just like the orange pumpkins we counted together!  

You can use store bought, washable finger paints or even make child safe homemade ooey gooey paint as you explore the colors of fall together. Allow your little one to openly create with the colors. If painting with his hands is not something he is comfortable with, offer him a paint brush or try pouring a few colors of paint into a zip-closure baggie so your child can explore the colors without getting messy hands.

Find more recommended children’s books for toddlers 12 to 17 months, or find an easy at-home activity designed to strengthen pre-reading skills in your toddler.