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What did the A Say?

An urban ABC book teaching the letters through phonemic awareness and a musical phonics ABC song compliments the story.

Photo of Cara Zelas

Written by

“Ahh” said the A. Alika ate an apple. “Buh” said the B. Bento bounced a ball. “Kuh” said the C. Casey cuddled a cat. “Duh” said the D. Dominic did a dance. “Ehh” said the E. Ellen stomped like an elephant. “Fff” said the F. Felipe hugged his family. “Guh” said the G. Grace skipped in the garden. “Huh” said the H. Hayden helped at home. “Ihh” said the I. Imani watched an insect. “Juh” said the J. Jayden jumped like a joey. “Kuh” said the K. Kameela saw a kite. “Lll” said the L. Luca licked a lollipop. “Mmm” said the M. Mimi walked in the museum. “Nnn” said the N. Nasim took a nap. “Ooh” said the O. Olivia wriggled like an octopus. “Puh” said the P. Pedro played at the park. “Qwuh” said the Q. Queenie asked a question. “Rrr” said the R. Rajiv ran like a rocket. “Sss” said the S. Sydney smelled a sunflower. “Tuh” said the T. Tyson rode the train. “Uhh” said the U. Unya twirled an umbrella. “Vvv” said the V. Viktor munched on vegetables. “Wuh, said the W. Wendy waved her magic wand. “Kss” said the X. Xavier hid in a box. “Yuh” said the Y. Yaffa had to yawn. “Zzz” said the Z. Zhen loved the Zoo. Letters make the world go round! First we have to learn those sounds. Move your body and give a clap, Come on now let’s take it back! (Word count: 244)

Describe the intended vision for your early childhood book manuscript in 1-2 sentences

What Did The A Say? promotes a pre-cursor to reading by providing children and caregivers the tools to teach and learn the alphabet phonetically, to help facilitate early reading skills. The children illustrated in the book are from diverse backgrounds, making sure that when children read the book, they see themselves represented. The book is also accompanied by a phonetic awareness ABC (please copy and paste this link to hear the music: http://bit.ly/MUSICDRAFTABC)

Share your suggested book title

What Did the A Say?

PLEASE USE THE VERSION OF THIS QUESTION AT THE TOP OF THE SUBMISSION FORM: Share a draft of your manuscript (250 word limit, not including title).

“Ahh” said the A. Alika ate an apple. “Buh” said the B. Bento bounced a ball. “Kuh” said the C. Casey cuddled a cat. “Duh” said the D. Dominic did a dance. “Ehh” said the E. Ellen stomped like an elephant. “Fff” said the F. Felipe hugged his family. “Guh” said the G. Grace skipped in the garden. “Huh” said the H. Hayden helped at home. “Ihh” said the I. Imani watched an insect. “Juh” said the J. Jayden jumped like a joey. “Kuh” said the K. Kameela saw a kite. “Lll” said the L. Luca licked a lollipop. “Mmm” said the M. Mimi walked in the museum. “Nnn” said the N. Nasim took a nap. “Ooh” said the O. Olivia wriggled like an octopus. “Puh” said the P. Pedro played at the park. “Qwuh” said the Q. Queenie asked a question. “Rrr” said the R. Rajiv ran like a rocket. “Sss” said the S. Sydney smelled a sunflower. “Tuh” said the T. Tyson rode the train. “Uhh” said the U. Unya twirled an umbrella. “Vvv” said the V. Viktor munched on vegetables. “Wuh, said the W. Wendy waved her magic wand. “Kss” said the X. Xavier hid in a box. “Yuh” said the Y. Yaffa had to yawn. “Zzz” said the Z. Zhen loved the Zoo. Letters make the world go round! First we have to learn those sounds. Move your body and give a clap, Come on now let’s take it back! (Word count: 244)

How has this book been informed by early childhood language development research and evidence? (response minimum 250 Characters)

I am an educator and reading advocate, to give the gift of love of reading to a child is a powerful tool. There is a lack of focus on teaching phonics, which is the scientifically proven pre-cursor to creating life long readers. "According to all the research, what you should see is a heavy emphasis on explicit phonics instruction. If you do a good job teaching phonics, kids get off to a quicker start. And they accelerate their progress faster and read more and like it better and so it becomes a self-reinforcing cycle."* The manuscript uses tier 1 vocabulary and each example (eating an apple, taking a nap etc.) is an action that children experience. Music is a wonderful tool for children to engage with and learn from, I have created a phonics ABC that goes along with the manuscript which perpetuates and supports language development. (Please copy and paste this link: http://bit.ly/MUSICDRAFTABC - please be mindful that this is a rough draft that can be amended.) *http://bit.ly/2HF42Mo

How have you crafted this manuscript to resonate with and/or reflect the experiences of those living in urban contexts? (optional question)

I have created the manuscript and illustrations to resonate with an urban context at the forefront. The illustrations are a mix of photo images of Philadelphia where the children reading the book may live. Each letter corresponds with a child from a different background and ethnicity, it is really important that when children are reading books, that they see themselves reflected back. The benefit of creating illustrations with diverse names and ethnicities in and an urban environment, help the reader and child engage and connect to the book and the content. I envision that this could be a series of books, with the background photography representing different cities all over the world.

Location: Country

United States

Location: State or Department

NY

Location: City

New York

Website URL (optional question)

Website: http://www.worldoflittledude.com/ Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/worldoflittledude Portfolio link to an example of my work: (please copy and paste) http://bit.ly/BWOLDBrainVacation http://bit.ly/BrainVacationMUSIC

Tell us more about you / your team

I am an educator and author, originally from Australia however a long time resident of New York City. I have founded Big World of Little Dude, which is an educational platform teaching children social and emotional skills. This is delivered through a book series and literacy-based curriculum with the core themes of: Kindness, Friendship, Mindfulness, Empathy, Manners and Courage. Each lesson comprises of reading, singing, puppet play and hands-on activities. All books are set to music and can be read and sung and each book has a how-to guide that extends the themes for caregivers and teachers (above I have put a link to a sample of a book.) My passion is education and teaching children. I also have experience and expertise of understanding how to self-publish and the process of putting a book together is something that I am well versed in.

Provide an example visual identity for a look and feel you might like to achieve. ( (optional question, 3-5 visuals)

The illustrations will be a mix of photography and traditional illustration. Each background image will be of an urban landscape of Philadelphia, not of popular landmarks, but of urban neighborhoods where children and families live. Each child illustrated is from a different ethnic background.

Multiple Choice - Have you been previously published (online, self-published, and print included)?

  • Yes

If yes, please list titles and publications.

Brain Vacation: A Guide to Meditation / 2018 Hello, Friend: A Guide to Friendship / 2018

Do you have an agent?

  • No

How did you hear about the Challenge? (optional question)

  • OpenIDEO announcement email

What best describes you? (optional question)

  • I am/we are creatives, writers, or artists

13 comments

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Photo of Perlina Murray
Team

I think there should be a comma, after a musical phonics ABC. Keep tweaking the manuscript to make it more fun and interesting.

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