Tuesday, February 13, 2018

Penguins Love Their ABC’s (Sarah Aspinall)

Author:  Sarah Aspinall

Illustrator:  Sarah Aspinall

Target Ages:  1-6

Genre: Concept Picture Book—Alphabet

Publisher Summary:
It’s an alphabet hunt!  Join the fun as six playful penguins follow simple clues that lead them to find each little letter of the alphabet.

First Lines:
Once there were six little penguins—
six little penguins who loved to play
games with the alphabet.
Today they had put on their special
hide-and-seek glasses because…

Memorable Moment:
“We love our abc’s, and we love alphabet soup,” said the little penguins.  “But not as much as we love… Mama Penguin.”

As soon as I saw the cover, I had to read this book!  The penguins pulled me in like a girl to a platter of chocolates. The illustrations inside do not disappoint!  Lively penguins roll off the pages and into the hearts of readers of all ages!  The pictures alone are enough to cause children to beg to read this book over and over.  

The text is highly engaging.  For instance, children are asked questions, like what color they like best and which letter comes next. Also, they are encouraged to make predictions, such as how the penguins should carry the letters back to mama and what’s for supper. There are additional opportunities built in for parents or teachers to encourage responses. For instance, each letter has the same sentence pattern:  ___ is for ___ (h is for heart). A penguin is holding the item near the sentence. Children can figure out the answers with the visual context clues. Finally, the story has humor (imagine penguins in their underwear) and heart (see memorable moment quote).   

Penguins Love Their ABC’s is the perfect early childhood read.  You can check it out at the library, but I think it is worth buying for your personal bookshelf.

Ideas for Extension Activities at Home or Lesson Plans for Teachers:
  • Food Fun: Make alphabet soup together: Alphabet Soup Recipe.
  • Art:  Penguin Crafts here and here.
  • Letter Sounds:  List of activity ideas here.
  • Science:  Read some juvenile non-fiction about penguins.
  • Letters:  Practice identifying letters using flashcards or other creative activities.
  • Games:  Play hide and seek.
  • Writing:  Write out this sentence from the book: ___ is for ___.  Either pick the letter or allow the child to pick the letter.  Then, instruct the children to write a word or draw a picture to go with the letter.  Older children can write out the sentence themselves.

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