AlphabetownUSA: A Letter-Perfect Place to Teach Reading
The first step towards reading starts with learning the alphabet. Most children start recognizing some letters between the ages of 2 and 3, although every child has a different pace. The most basic step is getting kids interested in stories. Reading aloud to children gives them the idea that books include print, which is made up of letters. When adults sing the “Alphabet Song” it doesn’t take long for babes to pick it up.
Another help towards teaching the alphabet is to write a child’s name on his or her artwork — OK, on scribbles –– and then point out the letters one by one. Eventually, tots get the idea that the letters put together stand for the name. Once a child recognizes a letter, play word games like “what word starts with B?” Ball, baby, boy, or use the first letter of the child’s name as a jumping off point.
In your retail store, display an assortment of books that make teaching alphabet skills fun! Using a combination of methods including singing and reading books specially developed for young children will have them recognizing letters and words in no time.
“A” is for alphabet, “B” is for book and “F” is for the family owned company that publishes books in the AlphabetownUSA series where letters have distinctive personalities. The books, which incorporate bright, engaging illustrations, introduce language skills to young children who giggle over the adventures of Nancy, a green “N,” Frank, a bright red “F” and slate blue “Z” for Ziggy.
With lots of help from their four children, Ryan and Nicole Mayer of Rolesville, NC, created the AlphabetownUSA series, illustrated by artist Russ Simmons. The titles are for youngsters 2 through 8 years old. At the older end of the spectrum, The Vowel Gang Takes a Trip teaches basic math skills and number recognition. Where is Ziggy, which received an Honorable Mention for Best New Children’s Book, at the 2008 New York City Book Festival, shows off that all-important letter Z and the other twenty-seven in the alphabet while stressing teamwork.
Cataena Goes Camping deals with the often confusing hard and soft letter “C” sounds and points out the value of always being prepared. The newest addition to the series, Madison’s Magical Adventures, debuts this summer. The books are hard cover and each about twenty pages long.
In addition to being child-inspired, the AlphabetownUSA series combines fun and education. Each book revolves around an everyday situation that kids can relate to, making the life concepts as well as the academic information easy to grasp.
The Mayer family strongly believes in giving back, so a portion of the proceeds from each book is donated to various child-oriented charities.
These imaginative books began when Ryan, a former police officer, was home recuperating from an injury and wrote the first book. To lend more value, he turned to Nicole who has a background in education. Clearly, the series has achieved its goals, as many educators have praised the work. The Principal of the Elementary School in Moorestown, NJ called AlphabetownUSA “a creative concept that introduces children to letter recognition, word formation and life lessons. The illustrations are eye catching and will attract young learners with their bold colors and interesting adventures.” The Trinity Episcopal Preschool, also in Moorestown, NJ. is using the books in their curriculum.
Order AlphabetownUSA series books. They spell “success”: www.alphabetownusa.org