Your preschooler will enjoy finding this silly elephant as he tries to hide among the flowers, in between the sheets and even under the table. This book introduces your child to prepositions in a fun, easy-to-understand way, to help build preschool reading skills. The colorful pictures are great for looking at details and talking about familiar places. A book with text in Spanish and English is a great way to introduce new words to your child.
Before, During and After Reading
Talk about a time you and your child have played a game of hide and seek. Show her the front cover of the book and sweep your finger under the words as you read the title. Invite her to tell you what she sees and what she thinks the book might be about.
Provide a toy elephant, or a picture of an elephant, as a prop for your child to hold and use as you read the book.
Encourage your child to use her toy or picture to imitate the elephant in the story. Where possible, encourage her to tell you where she sees the elephant hiding in the book and where in the house you might find a similar place. Invite her to place her toy elephant in the spot, and repeat the phrase from the book.
You might say:
Look where the elephant is now, inside the closet. Can you find a closet in our house? Can your elephant hide inside the closet? Let’s say that together, inside the closet!
Say words from the book slowly so that they break into syllables and see if she can guess what you are trying to say. As you hold the book, keep the picture from her view, and explain what you are doing.
You might say:
Listen as I say a word slowly. Let’s see if you can guess. Under the ta-ble. Under the ta-ble. Yes the table, great guessing! Let’s try another one! At the par-ty. At the par-ty. Yes, at the party!
Cut down the sides of a paper grocery bag to form a large sheet of paper. Gather some white and black paint. Pour white paint in a container and let your child help add a little black paint and mix to make gray paint. Give her a variety of brushes or sponges to paint on the paper. Talk about what you see her doing and ask questions to engage her in conversation. You might cut the dry painting to look like an elephant and use to play a hiding game like in the book.
Go on a letter hunt in the kitchen. Gather magnetic alphabet letters of her name and place them on the top, inside, behind, between, and under things. Explain that the letters of her name are all over the room. You are going to say a little chant to give her a clue, fill in the letter and the place you put it, and go in order of the letters in her name. When she has found them, all the letters will spell her name. Say them together.
You might say:
The letter _B__ is hiding from me. It’s __inside__ the __pot_. Can you look and see?
You found the _B_. /b / /b / B. You can put it on the refrigerator, let’s look for another one.
The letter _e__ is hiding from me. It’s __behind__ the __broom__. Can you look and see?
You found the _e_. /e/ /e/ e. Put it next to the B on the refrigerator, let’s find another one.
Beginning Writing: Tell Me About It – at the end of the book the elephant was at a party, encourage your child to draw a picture about a party and tell you about it. Write the words she says and read them back to her. Remember that her drawing may be a series of lines and shapes, it’s the process, the conversation and the praise and acknowledgement you give her that are of value to this activity.
Letter Knowledge: Cup-O-Letters – use the cup with a letter and set in different places around the room like in the book: among, inside, behind, between, under, in, on top, at. Give verbal directions as to where the cup is.
Oral Language: Toy Adventures – use the elephant toy to initiate a dramatic play opportunity. Talk about where the elephant can be at a zoo, circus, or jungle. Have her tell you what the elephant is doing, is it has a name, what it likes to eat, questions that will get her talking. If she said a one or two word answer, repeat her words in a sentence.
Phonological Awareness: Silly Soup – refer to the page of the book showing the inside of the closet. Gather items that begin with the same sound like bear, ball, book, bird. Refer back to the book to remind her of the story and play the sound soup game.