Book Review: All About Letters All Year Long by Gina Hartlage

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If you are looking for a way to totally immerse your child in the sounds and symbols of the English language than All About Letters All Year Long will be a treat for you! Lynda Coats, the author, has completed the hard work for you. She has created a phonetically sound master list of all things letters. Each week, she offers a lesson based on a particular letter, in alphabetical order of course. As she states, your child will be inundated with the sound of the week through the typical sight words, vocabulary, handwriting and Bible stories. Taking the ideas deeper, Coats uses manners, daily routines, geography, history, science and field trips, just to name a few, as reinforcing topics. For example, during lesson 19, the letter ‘s’, your child can focus on the basic sight word “said”, but also work on the country of Syria, enjoy a field trip to the YMCA to go swimming, and sit down with the family for a game of Scattergories Jr.

The up side to this program is that you will teach your youngster that letters and the sounds they make are everywhere. They are, and Coats has found them! The only downside is that the lists of potential topics seem daunting. I felt a bit overwhelmed when trying to determine which activities I wanted to chose for my Pre-K and Kindergarten student. The key is to use the wealth of information and ideas that Coats presents and then choose the topics that work for you and your child. There are enough that you can mix and match the entire school year. There is much more here than just ‘a’ says /a/ as in apple.

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