Books with verbs to level up your child’s language development: 24 of the best

Yes, OK! I know I go on and on about the power of verbs to power (drive, propel, and kick-start) language development. I can’t stop (or cease, or desist, or refrain from) it!

Yes, lots of kids and adults benefit from targeted practice. But you can also do great work with books, too: especially with pre-schoolers and younger school-aged kids. So, if you’re strolling (loping, darting, flitting, hurrying, or trudging) around or through your local library;

or ambling (jouncing, galumphing, lumbering, sneaking, or prowling) about a bookstore over the next few weeks, look out for (watch for, inspect, search for, check out, study, view, or scan for) books stuffed (suffused, packed, loaded, jammed, crammed, or filled) with verbs.

To help (assist, support) you in your quest for verb-laden adventures, here are 24 favourite books we recommend:

A Good Job by John Burningham (e.g. Buzz buzzes the fly…we clap but we miss it…catch the fly…swat at the fly)

Are You My Mother? by P.D. Eastman (I will go…)

Bibs and Boots by Alison Lester (Put on your boots…put on your coat)

Fraser’s Grump by Sue Heap (Buster barked at the…Buster barked at the…)

Grandpa and Thomas by Pamela Allen (Grandpa and Thomas go paddling. They paddle and they paddle and they paddle)

Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. Seuss (Would you, could you…?)

Helping by Bob Graham (Sweep up the dust Tom)

Hurry, Hurry Mary Dear by N.M Bedecker (Dig the turnips, split the peas, cook molasses, curdle cheese)

Mr Brown Can Moo! Can You? by Dr. Seuss (He can go…)

Mr Gumpy’s Outing by John Burningham (The dog teased…the cat chased..the rabbit hopped…)

Piggybook by Anthony Browne (Mrs Piggott washed…made…vacuumed…)

Press Here by Herve Tullet (Press here and turn the page)

Put Me in the Zoo by Robert Lopshire (I can put them…)

Richard Scarry’s Best First Word Book Ever (two pages of action words)

Richard Scarry’s Best Word Book Ever (two pages of ‘things we do’ words)

Room on the Broom by Julia Donaldson (The frog found a… the cat found a…the bird found a…the dog found a…)

Sniff! by Matthew Van Fleet (Runny nose drips, Nose smells flowers-sniff, sniff, sniff!)

Spot’s Halloween (Helen dresses as a fairy…)

Stick Man by Julia Donaldson (A stick!…I’ll fetch it and drop it, and fetch it)

The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle (On [Monday-Saturday] he ate through…)

The Witch’s Children by Ursula Jones (She changed the…)

Up in the Tree by Margaret Atwood (We swing in the Spring and we crawl in the Fall)

Who Sank the Boat? by Pamela Allen (Do you know who sank the boat?)

Whose Mouse Are You? by Robert Kraus (Shake my mother…free my father)

If you need more, check out our ‘More verb-charged books to ignite your child’s language development’ article

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David

Hi there, I’m David Kinnane.

Principal Speech Pathologist, Banter Speech & Language

Our talented team of certified practising speech pathologists provide unhurried, personalised and evidence-based speech pathology care to children and adults in the Inner West of Sydney and beyond, both in our clinic and via telehealth.

David Kinnane
Speech-Language Pathologist. Lawyer. Father. Reader. Writer. Speaker.

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