When I am working backwards from a story and teaching new vocabulary I sometimes have students make T-charts and I also like just plugging the story into wordle.net. Just take any text of your story and Wordle will make a word cloud for you. Sometimes you have to manipulate the text so that your high frequency words pop up. You can see here that some English even showed up because some questions on our activity were in English. This was a día de los muertos reading.