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ABC Recipes: 26 Easy and Adorable Alphabet Recipes for Snacktime Review by Cindy West

Tracy Jarboe and Stephani Sadler
ABC Schoolhouse
3245 Black Canyon Rd
Colorado Springs, CO 80904

ABC Recipes is a 91-page e-book that provides recipes and activities for teaching the letters and sounds of the alphabet. The lessons, appropriate for preschoolers to 1st graders, are written with the classroom teacher in mind, but no major adaptations are necessary for use in a homeschool.

One recipe per letter of the alphabet is included in the book. Most recipes are fairly healthy and only require typical kitchen ingredients, although some sweet treats are suggested. All of the recipes are easy enough for children to help prepare, and they include appealing final results such as fruit kabobs or Goldfish crackers swimming in a blue sea.

Also included for each lesson are:

  • an ingredient and materials list for preparation
  • tips for a successful lesson and additional ideas to spice up the recipes
  • a fun and simple poem
  • a literature list of 4-7 books that either go with the letter or the letter's theme (Most letters have a theme. For example, the theme for the letter D is Dinosaurs. The recipe suggested is a Dinosaur Dig, so the book suggestions are dinosaur related.)
  • three to five additional activities to reinforce the letter or letter theme (These might include art activities, crafts, experiments, writing prompts, songs, drama ideas, graphing activities, or other math activities.)

The text and pictures are black and white, except for the first page. Each letter's activities are covered on two pages. The first page is a recipe "card" that should be reproduced so the child can help gather ingredients and materials and follow the simple directions. Non-readers can follow picture directions as you read aloud the written directions. On the second page you'll find all the additional ideas. Cute illustrations definitely add to the book.

Each letter comes with a reproducible page that can be used for a writing prompt, notebooking activity, or copywork. At the top of the reproducible, you'll find a picture of a place setting where child can draw the finished recipe. At the bottom of the reproducible, you'll find a couple of primary writing lines to use however you like. A template for a chef's hat and directions for making a dishtowel apron are also included in the book in case you'd like to create special alphabet cooking attire.

The lessons are very straightforward, which means there's no need to read through lots of unnecessary writing. The recipes and ideas are presented in a consistent format, so finding what you need is very easy. I feel like the book can be used as a stand-alone curriculum for introducing letters and letter sounds to your child. Or you could easily use the book alongside another curriculum as a fun addition.

Think of the real-life skills your little one will practice each time he or she helps with a recipe! Not to mention the other academic areas covered if you choose to do the suggested activities. From the perspective of a hands-on homeschool mom, I give this book two thumbs up for fun and learning!

Product review by Cindy West, The Old Schoolhouse® Magazine, LLC, December 2009