Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Simply Made: Personalized ABC Book

I'm a firm believer in making things relevant to our tots' surroundings. When I taught kindergarten in an inner-city school, half of my class did not speak english. Talk about a challenge! I had to work really hard at making learning relevant to my students. For me, that meant using real objects and pictures as often as possible--things they would come in contact with during their day and actually recognize.

I think it should be the same with our tots. Some of the objects in alphabet books are strange choices. (A is for abacus...huh? What tot knows what an abacus is?) While they are valuable for building vocabulary, sometimes they just don't make sense to our little ones. So, let's make a Personalized ABC Book that is relevant for our tots!

Materials Needed:

  • Small Photo Book/Brag Book with enough spaces for 26 photos (I found mine at the Dollar Tree)
  • Pictures of People/Objects/Places for each letter of the alphabet that are RELEVANT to your child
  • If you're feeling extra crafty, scrapbooking supplies

If you're feeling extra crafty and have scrapbooking supplies, you will need to make labels for each of your letters and a cover for your ABC Book.


Below is my "N is for nap" page.

If you would rather use a photo-editing program you can add text to your pictures before printing them out. Picnik is free and easy to use. Plus if you have more than one example for a letter, you can create a collage.

Below are some examples I made using Picnik:


Once you've gathered and printed all of your pictures, place them in your photo book in alphabetical order. If you have extra spaces, consider adding a page of shapes, colors, numbers,etc. (You can also make this in Picnik with the simple shape stickers.)

~If you have a hard time coming up with something for a letter, think about cartoon characters or labels. For example, U is for Uniqua (from Backyardigans) or U is for Uncles.
~Another option for hard letters could be using some environmental print (food labels, signs, etc.) your tot might recognize.

Once it's done, give it to your tot and enjoy the ABC fun! It's bound to become a favorite!


MommaKristi said...

This is super cute and a super simple idea...think I'll try to make them for all 3 boys!!!

melissa said...

LOVE this! I totally need to make this for my two boys! :) Thanks for sharing!

Savannah said...

Great idea, thanks for sharing!

Bytesofmemory said...

What a lovely idea! I know Sammy would have loved this when he was learning his letters since he loved all of the personalized items :-)

Thegirlwhopaintedtrees said...

Great idea:) We did this ages ago for a food alphabet photo book:
Here's the list of items in the book:

Holly said...

Love this idea!!

Corrie said...

This is a great idea. Can you share some ideas for letters that are a little harder like vowels, x, q, v, w, etc.

Sara M. said...

I'll see if I can help Corrie. I tried to fill in with as many names as I could first. I also looked through my picture files on the computer to see if the pictures would help me think of anything creative.

W= eating watermelon, water (playing in the sprinkler?pool?) walking, even Walmart if you shop there often! (It's environmental print!)

Q= Quilt (I have a picture of Jonah laying on a favorite quilt his grandmother made) Queen (get a Burker King crown and take a picture)

V=vegetables (I have a picture of Jonah eating veggies) Not a great one, but I had a hard time with this letter, too.

Z=Ziti (I have a great picture of Jonah eating pasta when he was little and we make baked ziti, so it worked for us.)

For vowels, we had a person's name for A (Addyson, my son's friend at Parent's Day Out), E=Elmo, I=ice cream, O=Oscar the grouch, U= Uncles

Make a list A-Z and brainstorm for a few days. I hope my suggestions helped!

Sara M. said...

Thank you Holly! So glad you liked it!

Sara M. said...

Hmmm, maybe you could figure out a way to adapt it to something older for him. I can't think off the top of my head at the moment though!

Sara M. said...

You're welcome Savannah! Glad you like it!

Sara M. said...

You're welcome Melissa! Let me know how it goes!

Sara M. said...

I'm sure they'll love it! Let me know how it goes!

Sara M. said...

Thanks for the links!

Bridget said...

What about V= Vacume? My son loved the vacume cleaner. I had to get him his own. Take a picture of your child with the vacume???

Alisha said...

This is such a cute idea!! Definitely doing this! Thanks for sharing! =) What did you do for the letter X? lol

Alisha said...

and J??