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The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats

Enhance reading abilities with an activity about Ezra Jack Keats's book The Snowy Day that enriches and expands children's language and emergent literacy skills. Children will learn vocabulary terms and use prompts to think critically about the story.
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Prompts and vocabulary


Ask the child questions after the second and third readings of The Snowy Day, to start a conversation about the book. You can prompt the child on every page, using the questions below. If the child says something spontaneously about a picture, expand on it and ask the child to repeat it. There are questions for every one or two pages of the story.

  1. What does Peter see outside his window? (He sees snow.)
  2. What is Peter wearing? (He is wearing his pajamas.)
  3. What is Peter wearing in this picture? (He is wearing a red snowsuit.)
  4. What is piled up all around outside? (Snow is piled up along the street.)
  5. What is Peter making? (He is making footprints with his toes pointing out and then with his toes pointing in.)
  6. Who made these lines in the snow? (Peter made these lines by dragging his feet along in the snow.)
  7. Can you show me how Peter dragged his feet?
  8. What is happening in these pictures? (Peter has a stick and he is hitting a tree with it.)
  9. What happens when Peter hits the tree with the stick? (The snow falls down on his head.)
  10. What's happening here? (Peter is watching big boys have a snowball fight.)
  11. What does Peter make in the snow? (He makes a snowman and angels.)
  12. Can you show me how to make an angel in the snow?
  13. What is Peter doing in these pictures? (Peter climbs up a big mountain of snow, and then he slides down the other side.)
  14. What does Peter make? (He makes a snowball.)
  15. Who helps Peter take off his socks? (His mother helps him.)
  16. Where is Peter? (He is in the bathtub.)
  17. What is Peter looking for? Does he find it? (Peter is looking for the snowball he made, but it isn't there anymore.)
  18. Do you know what happened to the snowball? (It melted in the warm house.)
  19. What happens while Peter is sleeping? (It snows some more.)
  20. What is happening here? (Peter and his friend are going outside to play in the snow.)


The words listed below come from the story and its pictures. As you page through the book, point to the pictures and ask the child to name the object or the action shown. This will help the child learn new words. You can use the words below, or you can choose words you think will interest your child. Below are words for every one or two pages of the story.

  • bed, snow, pajamas, window
  • snowsuit, piles of snow
  • footprints, traffic light
  • tracks
  • stick, smacking, tree
  • hood
  • throwing, snowballs
  • snowman, angels
  • climbing up, sliding down
  • making a snowball, socks, underwear
  • taking a bath, pink bathtub, boat, duck
  • looking in his pocket, sleeping
  • sun, snowflakes
  • friend

Excerpted from

Read Together, Talk Together
Pearson Early Childhood

Excerpted from Read Together, Talk Together, the Pearson Early Childhood research-based program that makes reading aloud even more effective!

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