The Wonderful Birthday Gift


Developed by:Carus Publishing


Ages Under 2-5

This is a fun storybook app from Carus Publishing (makers of Ladybug’s Bookshelf) that captures the essence of early reading with its simple graphics that prompt understanding of events in the story. We love this app for its adorable story and easy interface for young children and early readers.

Get Ready

Prepare to use this app by using the following activities: 

  1. Pull Out The Birthday Candles And Sing Happy Birthday!Create excitement, build  context, and engage your child with this sensory introduction. Ask your child to pick a favorite stuffed animal or toy and set up a birthday celebration to kick off the story! 

  2. Remember A Special Birthday Gift!Ask your child to draw a picture of a favorite or memorable birthday gift. Talk about what made this gift so memorable and special.

Dive In

Help your child get the most out of this app by trying any of the following activities: 

Read to Me Feature:

Comprehension is a reading skill that can be taught and emphasized in important ways with early readers and even non-readers. Take advantage of the following ideas as you support your child’s comprehension with this app.

  • Check for understanding. This story allows your child to interact as though it was a real book; therefore, stop and discuss the illustrations before turning the page. Encourage your child to make observations from the pictures that may not be otherwise mentioned in the text.
  • Reflect on the story together. After your child finishes the story, ask them the following questions: What was your favorite part of the story? What did Mole’s friends create for a birthday gift? How do you know Mole liked the birthday gift? 

Read to Myself Feature: 

Oral reading is a skill that takes practice as children develop fluency and confidence. Take 
advantage of the following ideas as you support your child’s oral reading development with this app.

  • Practice oral reading. Encourage your child to read the story once or twice silently and then have ask them to read the story aloud to you. This will help develop fluency and confidence! 
  • Perform the story! This story includes great narrative on the part of the characters. After your child becomes familiar with the story, encourage them to create different voices for the characters or do a shared reading where you each take on the role of a character.

Branch Out

Extend your child's learning by using any of the following activities:

  1. Make Connections!Read Lyle and the Birthday Party or Moira's Birthday and encourage your child to make text-to-text connections by talking about the similarities and differences between these birthday stories (or any other birthday stories they are familiar with). Likewise, encourage your child to make text-to-self connections by sharing birthday memories they are reminded of after reading The Wonderful Birthday Gift. Making connections is an important reading strategy that supports comprehension and self-monitoring as a reader.

  2. Create Your Own Wrapping!Pull out crayons, markers, paint, stickers, and any other decorative items nearby and turn a regular brown paper bag into unique wrapping paper. Children can enjoy customizing the design for a special friend or family member.

  3. Write or Dictate Your Own Birthday Story!What was your child's fondest birthday memory? Did they receive a special gift? Model story elements, such as character, setting, and creating a beginning, middle and end as you create an extraordinary birthday adventure of your own.

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