What The Ladybird Heard on Holiday

Written by Julia Donaldson
Illustrated by Lydia Monks

For ages 3 to 8

Get this book
This book is best for:
  • problem solving
  • rhyming
  • speech sound - /l/


Two thieves, Hefty Hugh and Lanky Len are planning to capture a monkey from the zoo and use it to steal the Queen’s crown. But they don’t know that a certain crime-busting ladybird is on holiday in the same city and overheard their cunning plan. With the help of her zoo-animal friends, she comes up with an idea that will ensure the robbers don’t get away with it!

What The Ladybird Heard on Holiday is another picture book from the stellar partnership between Julia Donaldson and Lydia Monks. The illustrations are beautiful with brilliant colours and glittery textured highlights on every page. Little fingers will love searching for the ladybird on each page, as well as tracing the dashed lines to follow the ladybird’s flight path (also provides an excellent opportunity to model the verb ‘fly’ or irregular past tense verb ‘flew’).

Donaldson sure knows how to create a read-aloud story; this book is once again written in her trademark rhyming couplets style. This book provides a fun and interactive story to discuss the ladybird’s problem-solving skills and alternative plans for stopping the robbers from stealing the Queen’s crown. Overall it’s a delightful story about friendship and helping others in need. I'll be using this book with children working on their /l/ sounds, especially kids working on saying their /l/ sound correctly at sentence level (e.g. The ladybird is on the fence. The ladybird is on the camel's ear. The ladybird is on the monkey's tail.)

For further speech and language targets in What The Ladybird Heard on Holiday, see the list below.

Book Details

Narrative Structure: Interactive Episode

Story Plot: Conquering The Monster

  • animals - zoo, pets
  • dogs
  • friendship
  • places - city, zoo

Speech and Language Targets

Speech Sounds:
  • /d/ - day, dog, crocodile, ladybird, word
  • /l/ - ladybird, lion, Lanky Len, little, laugh, elephant, Holly, Willow, palace, pillow, camel, steal, wall, crocodile
  • voiced /th/ - the, then, them, they, then, their, feathered
  • unvoiced /th/ - thieves, with
  • conjunctions (and, then, but)
  • future tense
  • regular past tense
  • irregular past tense verbs (flew, went, slept, saw)
  • possessive nouns (e.g. the ladybird is on the queen's crown)
  • subjective pronouns (she, they)
  • action verbs (fly, creep, sleep, chase, run)
  • matching
  • labelling
  • predicting
  • explaining means to a goal
  • onomatopoeia
  • descriptive concepts (big, large, little, small, noisy, quiet)
  • temporal concepts (day, night)
  • friendship
  • good behaviour
  • problem solving
  • traditional opening
  • time
  • setting
  • initiating event
  • plans
  • resolution
  • moral
  • direct character speech
Rhyme & Sound Awareness:
  • copying sounds
  • rhyme
Book Info

Published by Pan MacMillan in 2017 (ISBN: 9781509837328)

To stay updated on the latest and greatest picture books for speech and language development, subscribe to our email newsletter.