Using Adapted Books with Older Students - The Autism Helper

Using Adapted Books with Older Students

Last time I shared with you about using adapted books with our younger students.  Those types of adapted books often have more pictures, repetitive phrases, and target beginning basic concepts.  We can still use adapted books with our older students but we don’t want them to look like little kid books or target concepts that are already mastered.  As our students get older I find their skills sets and reading abilities often vary even more between each other than my younger students.  Just like when picking out the right books for your younger students you need to look at your older students’ current skill level when selecting different adapted books.  Again, if you want the student to complete the book almost independently or at work station then the book needs to be on the student’s current independent skill level.  If you are using the book for teaching or to address IEP goals then the book will be slightly more challenging and considered their instructional level.

Many of our older students are still working on those difficult prepositional concepts but there are different adapted books I use with them.  If your student is skill working on basic location prepositional concepts you might use the book “Prepositions – Location Prepositions”   For this book the student can point to each box as they read the page.  The student then needs to select the targeted item and place it in the correct location.  For example, “put the polar bear beside the igloo” and “put the tissue on the table”.  The animals and objects in this book are common items but do not look babyish.

To make it a little more challenging use the book “Prepositions – Let’s Match the Prepositions”.  This book is more difficult because the student has to select the correct prepositional concept to answer the “where” question.  For example, “where is she pointing?  She is pointing “toward the paper”.  This book targets more advanced prepositional concepts such as “toward”, “through”, and “around” but it does have visuals to support the prepositional concept.

You can still use different I Spy adapted book with you students which target more advanced skills.  “I Spy Non-Examples” and “I Spy Real and Make-Believe” are two examples of adapted books which target higher level thinking.  For “I Spy Non-Examples”, the student has to find the item from a visual field of 4 that is “not” whatever the description is.  “I spy with my little eye…something that is not an animal” or “I spy with my little eye…something that is not a sport.”

The “I Spy Real and Make-Believe” book has the student select the correct real or make believe item which matches the given description.  “I spy with my little eye…something to eat that is make-believe.”

There are so many different language concepts you can target with adapted books.  Let’s look at adjectives.  In the book, “Adjectives – Two Component Adjective Find” your student has to select the correct item which matches both descriptive concepts.  “Find the one that is blue and round.”  This can be tricky because there are several blue items but only one that is both blue and round.  “Find the one that is sour and yellow”.

You can switch it and have your student describe the item.  In the adapted book “Adjectives – Let’s Match the Adjective” the student has to select the correct adjective to match the question.  For example, “How does it taste?”  “The cookie tastes….yummy!”  Each adjective has a visual to help the student learn and understand different describing terms.  You can extend the lesson by having the student name additional items which match the descriptive concepts on each page.

Even more challenging the student has to find two written words to match each person/item in the adapted book “Adjectives – Describe It!”

I have adapted books which target specific grammatical skills.  Your students may need to work on pronouns.  In the adapted book “Pronouns – Let’s Match the Pronoun” the student needs to select the correct he/she/it/they pronoun to complete the sentence.  “Who is playing?  They are playing tag.”  “Where is the fish?  It is in the bowl.”

Need to work on possessive pronouns use the book “Pronouns – Possessive Pronouns”.  The student needs to select the correct possessive pronoun to fit in the sentence.

There are adapted books to target different verb tenses.  You can work on selecting the correct is/are/am helping verb to complete the given sentence in the adapted book “Verbs – Present Progressive”.


After the student knows the difference between past, present, and future tense verbs you can use the book “Verbs – Past, Present, or Future?  Version 2”.  For this book the student has to determine if the sentence is in the past, present, or future.  This can be very challenging!

I know that was a lot of different adapted books I touched on but I wanted to show you there are so many different concepts you can target using adapted books.  Adapted books are not just for young students and can target a variety of language concepts.   As you can see some of those verb tense books or pronoun books can be challenging.  If you interested in these types of more advanced adapted books check out the following link for more information – Parts of Speech BUNDLE Adapted Book Series. 


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