AlphaBEASTIES!!

by Kelli Lewis

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Here’s an idea that works well for those young sweethearts of yours who are learning their alphabet! For older students, this could also be used as just a fun activity to get their creative juices flowing…or as inspiration for older students to create an alphabet book to share with younger learners.

Teaching Letters

This idea started with a book by Sharon Werner and Sarah Forss called Alphabeasties: And Other Amazing Types.

This book is a great way to introduce letters through objects and ideas that are familiar to students. Each page is filled with objects and words relating to a particular letter. The first page, for example, features an alligator comprised of lots of A’s, as well as other objects that relate to A. Each page helps students understand both the sound and shape of a letter.

Teaching Writing

This book is also great for teaching how to write the letters. It not only showcases the letters in many fonts, but helpful tips for remembering how to write each letter are also introduced.  For lowercase “a,” for instance, it says to write it “like a ball and a stick.” And, there are so many things on each page, it keeps students looking for more!

Making Your Own Book!

After exploring this book, your class could make their own Alphabeasties book. Together, you and your students could come up with a name for your book. (Alphabeasties is creative…but I am sure you all could come up with something just as grand!)

Depending on the time allotted and the dynamics of your class, you could choose to assign each student a letter to work on, or you could create one letter each day, together as a class whole. Students could work independently or in groups, getting ideas from the Alphabeasties book and then making their own versions.

And, once older students make their alphabet book, they could have a time set aside to show off their book to a younger learners and then donate it to their classroom– which would be a guaranteed great time for all of your beasties….big and small.

Kelli Lewis is a graduate student at The University of Georgia whose creative ideas are often featured on A Learning Experience.

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3 Comments

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3 responses to “AlphaBEASTIES!!

  1. Jeanne Jones

    I love the idea of this book. It not only helps with recognition of letters, it introduces the student to different fonts. Beginning learners recognize letters in one font and when they come across the same letter in a different font are unable to name the letter.

  2. Peggy_hernandez@gwinnett.k12.ga.us

    I love alphabet books. I think they are great to use with 2-5 grades too. I teach 2nd and I use them after I teach a unit of study. My students help create an alphabet book to review the concepts taught in the unit. For example we just finished a unit on the Creek and Cherokee Indians.
    A is for always giving thanks to the spirits for giving them all they need
    B is for baskets the Cherokee women wove
    C is for canoes which they used for travel

    Also, Q is For Duck is another great (different) alpahabet book to get students thinking outside the box. Student love this book and like to guess what the alphabet letter stands for.

  3. ecossick

    Awesome ideas!! Love the Cherokee and Creek alphabet book idea, Peggy…what a creative tie-in. And Jeanne– I agree– different fonts are the HARDEST thing for little learners to grasp about letter recognition. I loved that the Alphabeasties book incorporated different fonts for each letter– genius. Jeanne is our random $20 Comment Winner for last week, as well. Keep the comments comin’…we’ve got another gift card to give away this week!