In kindergarten, learning the alphabet is key to success. As children master letter names and sounds, they can begin to read and write. Because alphabetic principle is so important in kindergarten, it is a main focus all year long. Alphabet chants are a fun and engaging way to help children learn letter names and sounds. An alphabet chant is an alliterative rhyme that focuses on one letter and helps children practice listening for and saying that letter name and sound. The repetition, rhyme and alliteration make it easy for children to repeat and remember the alphabet chant.
Using Alphabet Chants in Kindergarten
As kindergarten teachers, we used alphabet chants weekly to teach alphabetic principle. Before beginning the alphabet chants, we would take the first 26 days of kindergarten to introduce the alphabet by using Rainbow Writing (Click HERE to learn more about Rainbow Writing and to find worksheets.). Then we would focus on one letter a week. We used alphabet chants on day 1 of each week to introduce the letter. When teaching one letter a week, we did not go in alphabetic order.
Research shows it is more effective to teach the alphabet using the following sequence. This sequence helps students put more commonly occurring sounds together to start building words. The sequence we recommend is as follows: cmat rsip bfog hjul dwen kgvxyz.
If you are in need of some cute, silly, fun and effective alphabet chants, Alphabet Animals: Chants A-Z are a great way to teach and learn the alphabet!
How To Teach Alphabetic Principle Using Alphabet Animals: Chants A-Z
- Introduce the Alphabet Animal (ie Carla Camel) using clues such as:
- This Alphabet Animal lives in the desert.
- She has humps on her back.
- She /ccc/arries people around on her back. (emphasizing the /c/ sound)
- She likes to /cccc/runch on /ccc/arrots and /ccc/andy. (emphasizing the /c/ sound)
- Ask, “What kind of animal is she?” Have students guess until one answers correctly (Camel). Or use Microphone Whispers (Teacher says, “Microphone Whispers 123.” Students whisper their answer into their ‘microphones’- they just pretend they are holding a microphone. This way, they all get to guess the Alphabet Animal. Then the teacher says, “If you guessed Camel, you got it!”).
- Introduce Carla Camel.
- Tell students you want them to listen for all the letter c sounds as you read the chant.
- Read the chant with rhythm.
- Then reread the chant one line at a time and have your students repeat each line.
- Finally, read the chant altogether (teacher and students read it with rhythm).
- Pass out copies of the chant and have students underline all of the letter c’s.
- Depending on your students’ number recognition abilities, they can count and write the number of c’s they find in the chant.
- Students then color the picture.
Alphabet Chants on Google Slides
Alphabet chants on Google Slides are a great way to introduce the letter of the week. Each letter of the alphabet has its own 18 page interactive digital slideshow including 5 interactive alphabet activity slides. These slides help teach alphabetic principle and are a great way to engage your students. You can use these slides in your classroom or for distance learning. See the video above for a preview of letter Aa.
Our Alphabet Animals: Chants A-Z are a great way to teach alphabetic principle! Click HERE to purchase them.