Here are some photos of the ABC notebook we are making for Tot School.
We began with the letter Bb, because K had a great interest in B and was already naming it, it was a natural place to start. I made several pages in Microsoft Publisher (you could use any image program) like this for both my 6yr old and my 2 yr old. They are making the notebook as a joint project, but the purpose is for K. K colors on the page and I will say, “K– color the beetle” and he will scribble on the beetle. P gets a word list form me and then writes the words for all of the items on the page.
I also include an intro page, which is pictured on the right for the letter Kk below, of just random K’s that were in Microsoft’s clip art. I am sure you can get them from their clip art website, as well as their graphics. On the left is a page with the letter in different fonts. I don’t use this page with K much yet but P likes it a lot and as K progresses it will be neat to show him different forms of the letters.
I believe in teaching the alphabet naturally. I am not really a letter of the week type of person, although I know it works well for some. Our alphabet teaching is built into our playing and everyday life. Our ABC notebook is just a journal of this basically. That’s why we didn’t start with A, K doesn’t much care for A yet!! We moved on to K since it starts his name. He really likes W too so we will do that soon.
Another thing we do in way of teaching letters is use the Leap Frog – Letter Factory dvd. These dvds teach sounds the correct way! I have never seen anything better that teaches letters and sounds to children than these dvds. I am not a big plunk your kid in front of the tv mom either, so we use these dvds as just a minor extension of our teaching. Both of the boys love the entire series of these, and it reinforces skills for P every time he watches with K. If you don’t own these and have any kids 5 or under, get them!!!!
Above all, teaching the alphabet should be fun, just like everything else in the tot school stage. If we are working on the notebook and K suddenly thinks it’s not fun any longer…we stop. Same with the dvds, or books, or any teaching methods. If it’s not fun, it won’t work at this stage!