My greatest resource for aiding in the mastery of letter sounds is this CD. It was put out years ago by Discovery Toys (which I think is like Avon for toys). The CD is called “Sounds Like Fun,” by artist Barbara Milne.
Children do not learn to read by memorizing the names of letters, rather by the sounds the letters make (phonemics). The “Letter Sounds” song (track #4) is a wonderful tool for reinforcing these skills and it is so easily learned that kids don’t even know it’s happening.
We had an anonymous tape-recorded copy in my preschool and it took me years to track down the artist (thank God for youtube). It is by far the BEST children’s CD out there, in my opinion. It is calm and relaxing, the sounds are clearly enunciated, and it’s nice background music in the car. In fact, I sometimes play it when I’m driving around and I feel a case of road rage coming on. It is repetitive and soothing and it calms my nerves. I’ve played it for my girls since they were babies. It is great for teaching signing as well. You can sign the letters right along with the song. Right now, my 18month-old is starting to speak and she is already memorizing all of her letter sounds- I LOVE IT!
Take a listen:
If you’re not sold on it, then I don’t know what to tell you…just wait till you hear your kids singing “Three Little Kittens” in their sweet little kid voice. Tears. It’ll move you to tears.
There are also songs for things like:
Counting by Tens
Counting in Spanish
Months of the Year
There is a also a great good night song that has become a part of our nighttime routine. I used to sing this ominous song that my mother sang to me…it really creeped my husband out and he said it was banned from our house (I was personally offended, considering my mom sang it just for me), but he said it sounded like the Freddy Kreuger song from “Nightmare on Elm Street.” He was right, and once he pointed that out, it just kind of ruined it for me.
So without even trying, this song just became “the song” we sing every night with our kids after we pray. It’s neat to see how we’ve established some traditions within our own family. The song is called “Sweet Dreams, ” and there is a clip on her website.
I do have to mention that I was really surprised when I saw what this gal looked like, you know when you hear a voice, you kind of have it in your head what the person looks like? Totally threw me off.
Also, the CD has been updated by Discovery Toys, they altered the “Letter Sounds” song to go with new packaging/subject matter. I prefer the original version. You can search youtube for the variances.
And no, I’m not being paid to endorse this Barbara lady. She doesn’t have a clue who I am.