A is for Ants!

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SWBAT recognize and name the letter A and its sound. SWBAT build vocabulary centered around the letter/sound A.

Big Idea

We use the letter A to read and write.

Prepare the Learner

15 minutes

I always start off my letter/sound instruction for a vowel by singing two ABC songs and a vowel song.  The first one focuses just on the letters and order of the alphabet.  The second one focuses on the sound of each letter.  I sing these songs every day of the school year.  The third song is a vowel song that teaches short and long vowel sounds for each vowel. Even though I have not formally taught every letter and sound at this time of year, the kids quickly learn the songs and they actually recognize many of the letter sounds before I have formally taught them. 

We then review pictures that begin with the sound of A.  I use the same pattern for these pictures every day and with every letter.  You will see this pattern throughout my lessons:

I say(name of picture)

Students  say(name of picture)

We all say letter sound three times. 


For example, I may begin with the picture of 'apple' with the letter A.  I say: Apple.  Students say: Apple.  We all say:  /a/ /a/ /a/

If you do not have any picture cards, here is a great video that reviews /a/ words and also addresses letter formation!!




Interact with concept

45 minutes

Ants Letter Art


Students are going to create a 'letter art' piece that we will post for the whole week.  Depending on my students, I give them a capital letter A to color, cut and glue.  They can color the A any color they want, but the ants (page 2 of resource) we color black.  I don’t use any particular color for the background construction paper for this letter art,  as any color will work. 


I do model for the students how to put the glue on the back of their A so that when they glue it onto the construction paper, their beautiful coloring shows!  I saY:  Only use 4 little dots of glue (top, bottom left, bottom right and middle) when gluing the A onto the construction paper.  I say this directly and model because kindergartners will use an entire bottle of glue for one piece of paper if you let them! 


I then model how to cut the ants.  I do this mostly for the legs.  I say: Cut around the legs so they don’t get chopped off. The legs are hard to cut because they are lines, so cut down and around them like a circle.   I then glue 3 ants onto the A (one on the left, one on the right and one in the middle).  The last step is putting my name on my paper.


After I’ve modeled the art, I release one row at a time to get up, get a letter T and go to their seats to cutting. There is no need to color the T because we are gluing on colored paper. 


My students have scissors in their desks.  I monitor and assist where necessary as students cut.  When they finish cutting, students must raise their hand.  I come over to check their cutting.  If it is correct and they are finished, I tell them to put their trash in the trashcan and go get a glue and construction paper. 


Once they are done gluing their A onto the construction paper, they raise their hand again.  If it is done correctly, I tell them to go get 3 ants and they color those black, cut and glue them onto the A.  I am constantly monitoring all students. 


They put their name on the paper and bring it to a table in the room to dry.  They put glue and scissors away and find their workshop center for the day. 

Extend Understanding

20 minutes

Centers: Students rotate through the centers, going to one per day.  I have a centers chart where they find their name daily and what center they are assigned to for that day. My centers are designed to address skills that students need, be it fine motor, gross motor or academic. 

1. Read the Room- I have kid sunglasses in a basket with fun pointers.  The kids choose a pair of glasses and a pointer and can walk around the room reading letters, words and numbers.   

2. Listening- I put the big books of all the stories we’ve read together in our reading program  in this center with the CDs of those stories.  Each CD has 3-4 stories, so the kids can listen to those as they sit on the floor and share the big book!

3.  Play Doh- I have capital and lower case cookie cutters that I put out with play-doh.  The kids can cut letters of their choice and make words, if they are able!

4. Computer- students can listen to /a/ pictures and a story on starfall.com