• Raffi Bandarian

Top 5 ABC Primer Books

Updated: Jun 28, 2019

All kids could use an extra boost in learning the alphabetic principle that letters match up to sounds. Once they understand this relationship between letters and sounds, they read words easily. Reading is easy for most kids, but not so for some. So, what can parents do to support their development?

Reading alphabet books or ABC primers is one way to foster the alphabetic principle. Reading alphabet books to your child not only helps them see the shape of the letters but also the letter sounds.


Here are my favorites:


1. Creature - Andrew Zuckerman


Creature by Andrew Zuckerman uses high-resolution images of animals on white backgrounds that showcase the colors, details, and intricacies of each animal. The alphabetic letters, both upper and lowercase, are featured along with the name of each animal. Some pages show parts of the animals, while other pages depict the whole image of the animal.

2. ABC Kids - Simon Basher


Alliteration is the theme in ABC Kids by Simon Basher – author of a series of cutely illustrated, informational books for kids. The tongue-twisting 4-6 sentence descriptions are sure to please, tease, and get the mouth moving as each word in the sentence begins with the same letter. Vocabulary building is sure to happen with this book. With bold illustrations on colorful, pastel pages, ABC Kids is sure to keep kids engaged.

3. Museum ABC - The Metropolitan Museum of Art


For the sophisticated, art-loving child or parent, Museum ABC, by The Metropolitan Museum of Art, is like taking a stroll through a museum. The diverse range of images allows the child to see the alphabetic world through an artist’s medium. Selections by famous artists that span art history will expose the child to different interpretations of the same object. From sculptures to tapestry and watercolors to oil paintings, Museum ABC is a carefully curated ABC Primer.

4. Alphamals A-Z - Graham Carter


Alphamals A-Z by Graham Carter is sure to expose a child to not just the alphabet, but to a menagerie of animals, both familiar and obscure. Each uppercase letter of the alphabet is followed by a concise, yet descriptive narrative of an animal that begins with that letter. The stanzas contain two sentences that teach facts related to each animal, like its habitat, diet, physical traits, or its evolutionary response to the environment. It is illustrated with outstanding images of digitally-crafted, geometric animals in their natural habitats. Alphamals A-Z is a winning alphabetical introduction with its creativity and poetic text.

5. Mr. and Mrs. Mouse and their Magical Alphabet House


A two for one is always a good thing as is the case of Mr. and Mrs. Mouse and their Magical Alphabet House. Developing visual scanning along with the alphabetic principle, children search out objects within miniature scenes of an era before the iPad. Magical Alphabet House is a hidden treasure chest that will appeal to parents who like to reminisce of how things used to be while teaching children about the alphabet.

For children struggling to read, the support of an educational therapist can help solidify the alphabetic principle.

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