Letter A Learning in Action

I am teaching young children again! Not my own children this time, but the children of a very good friend. See our original post about this new adventure here. Each week I plan to share our plans, which I did for week 1 here, and I also plan to share after our week is done so you can see my students in action!

I am excited to share all about our first week together, with a focus on the LETTER A! In addition to a letter focus each week I am using All About Reading Pre-Reading with them. Since I only have my students two days a week, we cram a lot into a short time! I also provide their parents with activities to do at home also.

All About Reading Lessons

This past week we enjoyed lessons 1-5 in AAR Pre-Reading. I am not doing the letter crafts from AAR in the order of the lessons, but am going to use those with our letter of the week focus. We are moving quickly through the activities that focus on other pre-reading skills and right now the emphasis is RHYMING! The kids loved all of the fun games and Ziggy the Zebra! We also completed the A is for Alligator craft page!

One of our weekly activities is a freebie from All About Reading called “Feed the Puppy.”  With this fun, hands-on activity, they will work on identifying upper and lowercase letters. Each week I will go through the cards with them and they can only feed the puppy the letters they can identify, which is highly motivating to them since they want the puppy to get lots of bones! Highly recommend this activity if you have kids working on letter identification.

 

Letter A Fun

We enjoyed several different activities, most from my site! I will link everything we used below!

Everything shown in this collage is included with our Ultimate Kindergarten @ Home Membership – which is the best way to get your hands on everything we offer, see the cost savings here!

Below you can see AK and Ki doing the following activities {clockwise from top left}:

Activities we did that aren’t pictured:

 

I also really love the Fine Motor Alphabet Bundle from Crafty Classroom! The kids enjoyed the following activities this week:

  • Listening Skills
  • Letter Path Trace
  • Cuisenaire Letters

 

Raising Lil Rock Stars Letter A

I didn’t get any action shots, but we enjoyed the verse bracelets, and tracing pages this week in addition to the items on the display board!

 

Letter A Toys & Puzzles

I love setting up fun letter displays and playing with the items. See more ideas here! Here’s our Letter A set-up:

Some of the items pictured below, see even more alphabet toy ideas here!


 

 

Letter A Books

We read tons of books featuring the Letter A! See all of our Letter A book ideas here!

Read & Write the Room A to Z

Many years ago when I taught Kindergarten I enjoyed using Read & Write the Room with my students. I began using this idea with my own children when they were younger. You can see our original post about this here. Now that it is time for me to teach Kindergarten again, I am bringing the activity back! But first, what is Read & Write the Room? Read below to see and decide if it might be something your child would enjoy.

What is Read & Write the Room?

The concept is very simple. Word cards are placed around the room to be read and as students locate the cards, they write the words on a recording sheet.

 

What is included?

 

Word Cards

Each set includes at least 5 words, some include up to 18 words! These are cut apart and placed around the room. You can also use these cards for other activities {print 2 and play memory!}.

 

Recording Sheets

I offer 5 different recording sheet options, choose what is best for your child!

 

How is Read & Write the Room Set Up?

  • Print the image/word cards and cut apart.
  • Tape these around the schoolroom or school area in your home.
  • Give your child a clipboard, and a pencil and have him/her find the words and record them on the recording sheet you choose.
  • For fun, allow your child to use funny glasses, a fun word pointer, and a special pen or pencil! You could even slip the recording sheet into the Crayola Dry Erase Center or sheet protector, and have your child use a dry erase marker!

 

WHY use Read & Write the Room?

  • Letter Identification ~ This activity is wonderful for children who are learning {or have recently learned} to identify letters.
  • Beginning Sound Practice ~ Since this set focuses on beginning sounds, it is perfect for identifying and learning beginning sounds.
  • Handwriting Practice ~ Instead of sitting at a table and writing words for handwriting practice, this activity gets kids up and moving. Often this simple change helps kids who are reluctant writers. The activity {searching for the word cards} can help them forget that they dislike handwriting practice!
  • Build Vocabulary ~ Your child may not already know the names of all words and this is a great way to build vocabulary.

There are a couple of ways to get your hands on this!

You can buy it here in my Shop!

OR

You can buy a Kindergarten @ Home Membership which will give you access to this and so much more!

Read & Write the Room A to Z is included in Level 2 and Ultimate memberships!

You can read more about Kindergarten @ Home here on my blog, see FAQ here, and see a spreadsheet with cost savings details here!

You’ll notice I just added our Kindergarten Monthly Calendar Notebook Membership {$18 value} to the Ultimate Membership, making the Ultimate membership level an even better deal!

Download Letter A Read & Write the Room for FREE here!

 

 

Letter A Printables, Books, and Activities

I am teaching young children again! Not my own children this time, but the children of a very good friend. See our original post about this new adventure here. One of the ways I plan to share with the parents of the kids I am teaching is through the use of Google Slides. I am creating slides to show what we are using so they can see and also so they can easily share with friends. In addition to sharing with them, I will be sharing with you!

Letter A Plans

You can see our plans for LETTER A here! You’ll find direct links to things we are using, and other links to help plan a Letter A unit! I decided to use Google Slides so I can update them easily in the future if needed!

 

Letter A Books

I am also creating book collections for each letter so I remember to pull out certain books each week! Planning like this in advance really helps me remember all of my ideas! As I get older, the ideas vanish at times!

Here is a link to our Letter A Books! I will be using books we own as well as books from the library when able.

Why are we doing a letter-of-the-week approach?

Honestly, to keep my brain in order. Going from A to Z and focusing on a letter at a time helps me stay organized. Now, we won’t ONLY be focusing on that letter. This is just a simple way to have fun with letters and sounds through printable activities, hands-on items, and books!

What grade/age is this appropriate for?

I am not big on labeling kids between the ages of 3-6 because they are all so different! Tot School, Preschool, Pre-K, and Kindergarten have what I call “blurry lines” and a child doesn’t always fit into a specific grade. The plans I am sharing are appropriate for kids who are learning letters, and basic early childhood skills {rhyming, opposites, basic K math skills, colors, shapes, patterns, etc.}. When you follow along with us, you’ll see how I am working with my students at their own pace, rather than identifying a specific grade level. It is a mix of Pre-K and Kindergarten and will progress as needed. Much of what I create is labeled “Kindergarten” but is appropriate for many younger and even older kids. Use our assessment to guide your choices. Feel free to adjust and choose activities based on where YOUR child is at rather than what GRADE they should be in! That’s the beauty of homeschool!

Will we use the same activities each week, for each letter?

No! If I find my students don’t like a particular activity, I will probably choose something else {unless it is something I feel is absolutely necessary}. There are SO many options, many I have created myself, but they don’t need to do every single letter A printable out there. That’s silly. I will choose several based on what I think they will enjoy and will meet them at their level. It may change from week to week and you’ll be able to see what we use in our Google Slides for each letter, which I plan to post about as we move along!

Is this all we are doing?

No! Our themes will be based on our Kindergarten Literature Units. These require little prep so I haven’t been focused on that right now. I begin school with them in a few weeks so I have plenty of time to get that ready. Digging out my ABC stuff was a much bigger project! We will probably begin with Countdown to Fall as our first literature unit! We will also be doing a few other things, which you can see in the Google Slides!

Peek & Find APPLE TREES

Peek and Find Apple Trees

We have a new Peek & Find featuring Apple Trees! Peek & Find is a great activity for for Tot Schoolers, Preschoolers, Kindergarteners and beyond. There are a few variations to this activity can easily grow with your child’s ability!

You can also add in some fun elements to the activity, or simply print, cut, and play! Below I will share the free printable, ideas for different levels of play, and fun variations.

There are two main elements of the Peek & Find activity.

The “FIND” board…

Apple Peek & Find (2)

   

The “PEEK” cards…

Apple Peek & Find (1)

Print the board on plain paper, or cardstock if you plan to reuse it. Print the cards, on cardstock if possible and cut them out. Laminate if you plan to use these cards repeatedly.

Looking for a great color printing option? See our favorite printer and ink here!

Save-Money-on-Printer-Ink-FB2_thumb_

A few options for play…

Option #1 {single player}

Print the Peek & Find board.

Print the cards and cut out.

Mix up the cards, choose one at a time and find the object on the Peek & Find board. Color, circle, or mark the object.

Option #2 {2 or more players}

Print a Peek & Find board for each player and one set of cards. Cut out the cards.

Flip over a card and race to see who finds the object first on their board. Using Dot Paint with this game is fun!

Winner keeps the card.

Person with the most cards at the end is the winner!

See a video of my daughter and I playing {we were using the SPRING theme board in this video} …

Option #3 {sensory, fine motor activity}

Create a sensory bin and bury the cards.

Use a fine motor tool {child tweezers} to dig for cards and pull them out and then find the object on the Peek & Find board and mark it.

Option #4 {gross motor activity}

Hid the cards around the room and challenge your child to find one card at a time and bring it back to the board, find it, mark it, and repeat! This is a great version for those of you with energetic younger kids!

 

Options for marking the board…

  • Mini Apples
  • Dot Paint
  • BINGO Chips
  • Bottle Tops
  • Pouch Tops
  • Mini Pom Poms
  • Markers, Crayons, Colored Pencils
  • Beads
  • Mini Erasers
  • Beans

      Download your FREE Peek & Find Apple Trees here!

      Peek and Find Apples-2

      Download-Here3131

      Apple Books for Kids

      Apple Theme Printables and Ideas

      Bible Verse Printables ~ Letter A

      RLRS Letter A Philippians 2 5 Bible Verse Printables

      Our Raising Lil’ Rock Stars Bible Verse Printables for the Letter A are available to download for free!  This set is based on Philippians 2:5, “Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus.”  A is for ATTITUDE!  This sure is a lesson I need right along with the children I teach!  Having a Christ-like attitude is a daily struggle for me personally.

      We used the group version in my children’s church class of 4 & 5 year olds and really enjoyed it. 

      I am using the home bundle with Ladybug as a review, working on the verses again later on.  For example, in my class we are on the letter E right now, but at home we just worked on our review of letter A. She is in my children’s church class so she is getting the group teaching and then getting it again at home with me. Good thing she really likes it!

      Here’s a peek at our home work {most of these printables are in the bundle version}.

      Here she was coloring the coloring page, she LOVES to color.  She wanted to copy the poster graphic so you can see it sitting beside her.

      RLRS Letter A -8297

       

      Color ~ Trace ~ Write the letter Aa…

      RLRS Letter A -8346

      RLRS Letter A -8348

       

      Cut and Glue the Verse ~ this is a great word work activity for her, identifying individual words and sounds she knows as well as the Bible verse as a whole.

      RLRS Letter A -8528

      RLRS Letter A -8529

      RLRS Letter A -8530

      Here’s an Instagram video I shared of her when she was working on this activity, singing as she worked!

      image

       

      She also enjoyed her verse bracelet at home.  She got one when we did it in Children’s Church awhile back too.  She and the other kids LOVE the bracelets! Yes, sometimes she wears it up on her big muscle.

      RLRS Letter A -8535 RLRS Letter A -8537

       

      Here’s a shot of how we did the letter page at church, I have all of the kids sign it on the day they are there! I just love all of their little signatures.

      RLRS Letter A -8542

       

      We have a banner at church, which you can see a glimpse of here on Instagram.  Here is the start of our home banner!

      RLRS Letter A -8553

      Here’s the work Ladybug did at home…

      RLRS Letter A -8541

       

      And, here’s Ladybug singing the verse for you!  The verse tune printables are only available in the bundle but you can hear the tune for Letter A in this video!  In case you don’t catch it, the tune is Are You Sleeping?

       

      The free version is ONLY for home use.  If you will be using these printables in a church setting, private group, co-op, preschool or other group you will need to purchase the group bundle here.

      Download your free Letter A printables here!

      Scroll down until you see the graphic for letter A and click on it to download the PDF file.

      Download or printing trouble? See tips here!

      These printables are from Raising Lil’ Rock Stars, see more info here!

      Raising Lil' Rock Stars

      Remember ~ I am offering a $2 discount on the Home Bundle for our June launch, it will expire on June 30, 2014. The discount code to use is ~ junelaunch