Book Cover of Ten on the Sled by Kim Norman.

Ten on the Sled: Action verbs and ‘ed’ contractions

Slide into these winter literacy activities that go along with Ten on the Sled book!

A favorite children’s song (Ten on the Bed) gets a delightfully slippery, slide-y twist! In the land of the midnight sun, all the animals are having fun speeding down the hill on Caribou’s sled. But as they go faster and faster, Seal, Hare, Walrus, and the others all fall off, until just the caribou is left. Now, a reindeer likes flying, but never alone, so all the animals leap onto the sled again!

Ten on the Sled story

Ten on the Sled by Kim Norman is available through Bookshare.

Ten on the Sled YouTube from Bookworm Storytime Read Aloud Books for Kids:

Tactile graphics

This story is about arctic animals – does your student know what these arctic animals look like? Before reading the story, use these PIAF-ready tactile graphics to help your student learn more about the physical characteristics of these ten arctic animals. Which of these arctic animals similar to animals in your area? How are these arctic animals different and why? For example: The bear in the story is a polar bear. How is a polar bear different from a brown bear? Why is the polar bear a different color? Why are most of the arctic animals white?


If you do not have access to a tactile graphic machine (such as a PIAF or Swell machine), you can create your own tactile arctic animal images with everyday materials!

Arctic animals tactile graphic resources

Download the Arctic Animals document (2 pages with 10 arctic animals) or download the larger individual silhouette images. These images can be printed on Swell paper and run through a tactile graphics machine (such as the PIAF or Swell machine) or can be printed on a regular printer for students with low vision.

silhouette image of a caribou.

What is the difference between a caribou and a moose? They appear to have similar characteristics! If it is appropriate for your student to do an internet search, ask him/her to look up information on caribou. If not, share this basic information:

What is the difference between a walrus and a seal? Walrus and seals belong to the same group of marine mammals, called pinnipeds, referring to their slippered feet. Walrus live in the sea and on the beaches in the arctic. Seals live along most coasts and cold waters, with the majority of seals living in the Arctic and Antarctic waters.

Action verbs

In this winter story, arctic animals pile on a sled and as they zoom down the snowy slope, each animal falls off with a descriptive verb. Each action word starts with the same letter as the animal. Example: “Walrus whirled” and “Fox Flipped”.

Ask the student to describe and demonstrate each action verb.

Braille contractions

Ten on a Sled is a wonderful book to practice reading the braille ‘ed’ contraction while reinforcing the action verbs. The word “sled” is repeatedly used throughout the story. Here are the ‘ed’ words from the story:

Want to practice more contractions? Here are the ‘en’ and ‘er’ words from the story.

‘en’ words:

‘er’ words:


Activities for students with additional disabilities

From TSVI Kara Hecht: This book has worked great for my students who need the more basic concept skills. We work on counting and the on/off concept. We pile 10 objects on a wooden board to mimic the sled and then knock one off as I read each page. Putting a pizza pan under the board for the items to fall onto makes a loud noise and is usually a hit! Another option is to Velcro pictures or objects onto a board and have the student put on/take off the animal that fell off.

Additional resource

By Diane Brauner

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