What are adapted books and why should I use them?  I recently was asked this by a teacher I started working with this school year and I realized I have shared some adapted books I have created but didn’t explain the actual concept themselves and how I use them with my students.  Adapted books are books that have been modified in some way and often make it easier for students with disabilities to use but I also find adapted books are more engaging for all students to read and target so many critical language skills.  I create and use adapted books because they are interactive, motivating, and target various language skills.  Many allow the students to feel successful and part of the book because they have to add or move pieces within the book.

This time of year I created some Fall adapted books which include “Scarecrow, Scarecrow What Do You See?, “What’s Scaring You?”, and “Where is the Jack-O-Lantern?”  Each book is created with different target goals and vocabulary terms but all the books are repetitive, model sight words, and require the student to participate in the story.

Let’s take one of the books and take a closer look.  “What’s Scaring You?” focuses on various Halloween vocabulary terms and the prepositional concept “on”.  My students absolutely loved this book when I used it.

Here is how I use the book “What’s Scaring You?” while working with small groups of students.  As I read the book, I point to each word box along the top of the page as I read each word “what’s scaring you”.  The box helps the students learn each separate word.  “What” and “you” are both sight words which are repeated throughout the book.

This book is also interactive because after I point to the word “you” in the book I point to the student whose turn it is and say “you” again.  Then we softly shout “BOO” as we pretend to scare each other in the group.  As we redirect our attention back to the book I point to the boxes along the bottom of the page as I read where the ghost is located.  “A ghost on the haunted house.”  Again “on” and “the” are sight words and the more repetition the better for our students.  The student then gets to take one of the ghosts and place it on the correct item.  I may have the student then practice telling the group again where the ghost is.  “A ghost on the haunted house”.  We continue to do the same thing for each page but take turns putting the ghosts on the Halloween item.  If you have a group of 3 students each student will get 4 turns to put the ghost on the book.

You can do this book as a whole class lesson and just take turns calling up a student to come put on the ghost.  You can have some students place the ghosts on and if you read it again you can have different students place the ghosts on the book.

Another adapted book I use at this time of the year is Count Color, & Name Wh-Question Adapted Book:  Halloween Edition

Each page has 2 different sets of Halloween items.  For each set of Halloween items the students have to count how many items and select the number, find the correct color to match the items, and determine what the item is.  This is great for the students to work on counting, number identification, color concepts, and seasonal vocabulary terms.

This book worked really well in small groups of 2-3 students.  For groups of 2 students, I would let each student get to do one set of the items on each page which worked out perfectly.  One student would count the haunted houses, find the color of the haunted houses, and find the haunted house picture and add it to the book.  For groups of 3 we either took turns on each set of items so one student did all 3 components of the Halloween item set and continued to rotate through the group.  Another option is I had each student complete one component for each Halloween item set.  For example one student counted the items, one student found the correct color, and one student selected the picture which represented the items.

You can also change the level of prompting for this book.  Some of my younger students can’t identify numbers yet so we would count the number of items together and I would just hand the student the correct number and have the student place it in the box.  Another option is to provide the student with a choice of 2 numbers and verbally say the numbers as you hold up the numbers.  For example after counting 4 brooms, we said “four” multiple times.  Then I would hold up the numbers 2 and 4 and verbally say “2” and “4” and the student would select the correct number.  You can also do this with the color pictures “tan” or “white” and have the student select from a visual field of 2 instead of multiple color choices.

If you did it as a whole class the students can count the items together and then choose a student to come up and put the correct number to represent the items.  Call another student to come up and put on the correct color and so on until the book is finished.