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Lil Sprouts Book Club: LMNO Peas

Go ahead and admit it. How many of you still rush through the middle of the alphabet to get to the chorus of "LMNO Peas?" You're not alone, we've all done it! It has such a nice flow to it, and it becomes a hard habit to break. Now with a little one at home that is carrying on the tradition, Keith Baker's LMNO Peas was a must read.

It's a delightful story of some rambling little peas that make their way through the alphabet with a variety of different careers and hobbies. Baker is also the illustrator and his pictures of peas being acrobats all the way to zoologists, are clever and creative.

I couldn't resist using some split peas in the pantry that never got used in a soup this winter (since we didn't have one) as our muse. I've been working with Mack on recognizing textures and on words that start with the same sounds. I had the picture perfect pea project in mind. I drew the letter M on a piece of white card stock paper. I drizzled glue throughout the inside of the shape. I poured some peas in a bowl and let Mack take handfuls and sprinkle them over the glue and then press down. We let it dry for a bit and then shook off the excess peas (like when you work with glitter). I then showed him some pictures of objects that started with the letter m (I found them on Google Images and printed them out) and had him tell me what they were. He is somewhat familiar with the items that I showed him, but I was really pleased that he could call them out on his own. I put a dot of glue on the back of each picture and let him glue them down. We practiced again and again saying the words as I made a point to clearly enunciate the m sound. We also talked about how rough the M made with peas was compared to the smooth paper. 

For children older than Mack's age (20 months) you could do a few different adaptations:

*Find an assortment of pictures that having different beginning sounds. Allow the children to point out the words that start with the letter you are focusing on. If they are old enough to cut and glue then allow them to work on their fine motor skills.
*Children could also do a scavenger hunt through old magazines or newspapers to look for words that have the same beginning sounds. They can then make a collage out of these pictures.

Our family has this book memorized by now, and we're still loving it! We were quite proud of our pea masterpiece today, and it was a great simple late afternoon project. Now if I could only get this little boy to eat his peas!

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