Q as in Quapple

Out of habit, I’m almost always likely to say, “A as in Apple”.

B is pretty much always “Banana”.

C is “Carrot”.

Naturally, all of my ears perk up when I hear what other languages do.

Take a look at Nicole Designs’ fruit and vegetable alphabet.

Gorgeous isn’t it? (Oh, you should see the rest of the site!!)

And no, I wasn’t really thinking, because I immediately galloped off to find out in which language people say, “Q as in…Quapple??”

Oh silly me.

Nicole Designs dot nl alphabet

Nicole Designs dot NL Alphabet Q

[Nicole Designs]

D is for Duck and MWWEe is for Pig

I came for the ducks…

HowToDrawIt Ducks

….and stayed for the pigs.

HowToDrawIt Alphabets

The turtles were pretty cool, too.

[How To Draw It]

Little Alphabet Jokes

Aw, a small handful of alphabet jokes!

Want more? Plunk yourself in the middle of a group of chatterboxy children. Give them a moment to get warmed up, and then you just grin along.

Off you go!


Q: What do elves learn at school?

A: The elf-abet!


Q: What is the capital of Chandigarh?

A: The letter C!


Q: How do you make one disappear?

A: Add n to make it none or add g to make it gone!

[Thanks, Sid, Bhumika, and Ann!]

ABCs For Young Learners

UPDATE (September 8, 2011): Want more activities? Find a whole bunch here!


No doubt most of your 4- to 6-year-olds are learning the letters of the alphabet. If your kids are anything like ours, they’re really really excited by the whole process.

Here are some of the letter learning activities we do to keep that enthusiasm level high!

All of these take more words to explain than to do. Kids don’t want all that much explanation on these sorts of activities anyway, so usually you can just start doing. They’ll get it.

a) Put your finger in the air. If you’ve traced the letter with your finger on the page in the book, stand up! Now trace the letter with your finger in the air! Write it really big! Now write it really small! Write it slowly! Write it quickly! Finished? Nooo! Now write the letter in the air using your toes! Or write with your elbow! Or write with your nose! Or write with your backside! Or write with almost any other body part you can think of! Note that I said “almost”!

(Teachers, if you’re not already, you’re going to become really good at facing the class and writing letters backwards – the letters will be forwards and correct for the students following your finger.)

b) Full body phonics. This is great for little ones who are just learning their ABCs and for older ones who might want a break from writing another page of phonics. The short explanation is that you’re shaping your body into each letter of the alphabet while making the sound of that letter. It’s all easier done than said.

For example, the letter A (we tend to work with the upper case letter for these): Stand up straight with your arms at your sides. Start to turn in place. At the same time, your arms start going up up up, while you say “A-A-A-A-A….” After maybe 5 turns, your fingertips should touch above your head, and you can stop, face each other, and give a little hop so that your legs spread shoulder length apart. There’s your letter A!

Choose whether you want to tackle all the vowels first or go straight through from A to Z. After 5 or 6 letters, we like giving the phonics sound to the students and letting them come up with their own body shapes for the letters.

c) Correct me, please. Spend a minute or two showing on the board how to write the letter of the day. The fastest way to check comprehension is to then start writing the letter incorrectly. Ask the class if it’s correct.

By my 3rd attempt, my kids are usually shouting out the horrendous mistakes I’m making. When I then tell them to write in their books, they’re eager to start, and they tend to make far fewer mistakes than when I skip this process.

d) How far up? Most of our students understand that letters rest on the bottom line when they’re writing. Some students don’t quite understand how far up each letter should go.

Try this: Using your non-writing arm, make the gesture you make when you indicate the height of someone who comes up to your chest; now move your forearm just a bit away from your body. This is the top line of the letter you are writing. Now take your writing finger, and write the letter in the air below your arm.

Variation requiring 2 people: Don’t move your non-writing arm. Place your writing arm below it to create the bottom line, and you have a writing space. Now ask someone to use the whole space to write the letter you are working on. You can make the space as big or as small as you’d like.

Sign Language ABCs

Copyright © 2007 William Vicars, sign language resources at Lifeprint.com

e) Fingerspell. I’ve been teaching my kids the American Sign Language alphabet. I simply believe that everyone should know at least some sign language. Learn some sign language in your native language and teach everyone you know.

Comments, questions, or suggestions, please let me know!

ABCs For Young Learners


やれば超熱中することうけあいの、文字を学習するためのいくつかのアクティビティを紹介します!こういうのは、実際にやるより説明する方が骨がおれます。子供は、こういうアクティビティをやるのにあんまり説明はいらないから、ただ始めてみて下さい。子供たち、ついててきます。a) 指をかかげて。本のページの中の文字を指でなぞった事があるなら、立って! 空中で文字を指でなぞってみて。すっごく大きく書いて!そしたら、すっごく小さく書いて!ゆっくり書いて!早く書いて!終わった?Nooo! じゃあ、つま先で空中に文字を書いてみて。じゃなかったらひじで書いてみて!じゃ、鼻で書いてみて。じゃ、背中で書いてみて。あなたが考える体のほかの部分で書いてみて。”おおまかな体の部分って事ですからね。


b) 全身をつかったフォニックス。ABCを習い始めたばかりの小さい子、そして、他のページのフォニックスをまだ目をこらして見ているすこし大きい子には、抜群です。文字の音を発音する一方で、あなたの体でアルファベットの文字をまねて形をつくるという、簡潔な説明になります。これは、案ずるより動くの安し。

たとえば、Aの文字(大文字でやる事が多いです);横に手をつけてまっすぐに立つ。その場所で回り始め。同時に、腕を上げて、上げて、上げて,”A-A-A-A-A…..”って言って。だいたい5回回ったあと、頭の上で指先を合わせて。止まって、お互い向かいあって、ちょっと飛んで、肩幅まで足をひろげて。これが A!







e)指スペリング。 生徒たちに、 American Sign Language alphabetを、教えてきました。みんな、いくつか知っていてもいいと思うの。あなたの国の言葉の手話をいくつか覚えて、みんなに教えてあげて。


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