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2011 Award
An Annoying ABC
( by Barbara Bottner/ illus. by Michael Emberley, Knopf $17.99 Score: )

There are days like this in almost every life. Well, maybe not quite as bad as this one that started when Adelaide annoyed Bailey and Bailey blamed Clyde and Clyde cried--you get the idea. In A, B, C order each student from A-Z does something that begins with the same letter as his or her name. It goes full circle until Adelaide actually apologizes. After sharing this lively alphabet, it might be fun to try to come up with an ABC story with different names and actions. Alternate with your child and involve other members of the family in telling an original story about people from A-Z. As always, Emberley's drawing of children are full or action and feeling, too.

What's in a Name Game

How many first names in alphabetical order can you and your kids come up with together? Play this cooperatively. One person comes up with a name and another peron has to come up with an action or noun that starts with the same letter as the name. i.e. If you say Alexandra...another person says.....ate apples. If one person says Billy...another person says bounced a basketball. Put your ideas together to make your own book with the names and actions you have come up with together.

A My Name Is Alice
Slightly older kids who are learning the names of the states and cities will like this classic jump rope or ball bouncing game.
A my name is Alice and my husbandís name is Al. We come from Alabama and we sell apples. B my name is Betty and my husbandís name is Ben. We come from Boston and we sell buttons. Etc. players keep jumping or bouncing for as long as the player can keep the names and places and products going in alphabetical order.
Next player comes in when the 1st player is stopped and continues with that letter.

Tell Me Five Game
This is a good game for the car. Tell me five things that you can eat that start with A. Tell me five things that you can find in the kitchen that start with B. etc

Shape Up ABC
Write capital letters on slips of paper that are folded and put in a bag. Player 1 pulls a slip and has to try to shape his body into that letter that others try to guess. This is a fun game that helps kids internalize in a sensory way the shape of the letters they are learning to write and read.

         A few years ago we published several books with suggested books and follow-up games that extend the book experience. One collection Read It! Play It! is for playing with babies and toddlers. The other is for preschool and early school years children. We also did a collection in Spanish, featuring books that were in Spanish or were bilingual. Click here to find the Read It! Play It! books.

Age: Early School Years. Review Published: Click here to purchase the product on

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