Author: Joan Singleton Prestine

4-Year-Olds Concept

In this relatable book, the author portrays a little girl’s impulsive responses to her day’s disappointments and fears. The book helps children identify feelings and emotions and learn how to use words to say what they want and need.

Before, During and After Reading

Oral Language and Print Awareness

Talk about the cover. Point to the title and tell your child that the name of the book is Sometimes I Feel Awful. Discuss the picture on the cover with your child. Ask your child how he thinks that child might be feeling and why. 

Oral Language

Brainstorm solutions. Your child will be able to relate to the story and illustrations and will likely be captivated by the struggles of the little girl who is the main character. As you read about each problematic situation, you may want to:

  • brainstorm with your child more appropriate ways the little girl could let the other characters know how she is feeling  
  • ask your child to explain how he expresses his emotions so others know what he is feeling
  • prompt your child by giving an example of the emotions or pointing them out while going through the story  

Oral Language

Give your child the opportunity to act out emotions by giving personalized scenarios. Use your child’s name as you make up scenarios.

For example:  Austin was building a tower with his blocks. His baby sister came over and knocked them down. Austin was really, really angry

Then ask, What do you do when you feel angry? How can you use your words to let your sister know you didn’t like it when she knocked down the tower?

Then guide him in role playing the use of words to let others know what he wants and needs when he is feeling angry, frustrated or sad. 

Explore more easy at-home activities designed to build pre-reading skills in your four-year-old, or or take the Reading BrightStart! Preschool Reading Screener. The screener can help you determine if your child is on the path to reading readiness, and provides a free plan for moving forward.