Using Amelia Bedelia Books for Idioms

I loved Amelia Bedelia when I was growing up in the early 90s! In fact, I often wonder if my love for these books is why I became an SLP.   Amelia Bedelia has had a bit of a makeover since then: she’s now a child!  Honestly, that makes more sense! 

If you’ve never read these books Amelia Bedelia struggles with idioms and homonyms and often makes mistakes because of this struggle.  I’ve been using these books with my kids who struggle with idioms.  After each mistake Amelia Bedelia makes I ask kids to reflect on what the person really meant.  For example, in Amelia Bedelia’s First Apple Pie her grandmother tells her to watch her fingers so Amelia Bedelia stares at her fingers and wonders why she needs to do this to make apple pie.  This is when I stop and ask the patient, “Is that what Grandma meant when she said to ‘watch your fingers’?”  And then ask, “What did Grandma mean when she said that?”  If kids still need more help I’ll give them choices: “Did Grandma mean ‘look at your fingers’ or ‘be careful with your fingers’?”  It turns out it’s not just me who loves Amelia Bedelia: my patients love her, too! 

Here’s a great example of how Amelia Bedelia misinterprets her Grandmother’s instructions to “watch your fingers.”

Side-note: I use the Amazon Kindle app to read books on my iPad both during in-person and telehealth appointments.  This way I can easily disinfect the iPad between appointments and use the book again the same day (instead of having to wait 28 days between uses so that any viruses on the book’s pages have plenty of time to dry). 

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