how to build an A--DIY

January 25, 2010


Muffin Tin Monday at Her Cup Overfloweth

I'm excited about linking up with Muffin Tin Mom for her weekly Muffin Tin Mondays blog carnival. This week's theme is ABCs/123s, but I just went with the first part of the theme...here's my bookspiration:

Juliet received How to Build an A by Sara Midda for her birthday a few weeks ago. This is a book I have had on my wishlist for a long time, so I was glad she finally got it. This book comes with foam block pieces (like the ones shown on the cover) that allow you to build all the letters of the alphabet.

Juliet thinks this is one of the most fun new toys to play with--we have already spent many afternoons building letters together. My hope is that it will inspire her to begin writing letters.


So, for this week's muffin tin lunch, I thought it would be fun to let Juliet play with her food and build some letters with it.

I looked for healthy food that would work well as letter pieces: ham strips, cheese, pretzel sticks, carrot sticks, bread, and sliced bananas.



I also added a few unhealthy, yet quite tasty, dessert items: gummy fruit and one gold fish. These would be the prompts for which letters to build with her food.

First, she chose the apple and built an A with pretzel sticks.


Next, she chose the goldfish and built an F. (The pretzel sticks turned out to be the most useful food item for letter building.)


When it came to the L, I thought she would use two sticks, but instead, she screamed delightedly and said, "A LITTLE L!"


Here's a lower case G for grape. (Finally, got a use for the bananas.)


And lastly, a beautiful W for watermelon built out of ham.

Juliet really enjoyed this lunch and it wasn't that hard to put together. Any sort of food that you can cut into strips or circles would work--those are the basic shapes that got the most use for our lunch.


{If you are looking for something a little more permanent than food to do this activity with, Nicole from Tired, Need Sleep has created a printable letter template that you can download, print, and then use to cut foam shapes for your child to use in building letters.}

Do any of you have a copy of How to Build an A? What are your thoughts on it? Any other good alphabet books to recommend?

29 comments:

Tiffany said...

Great tin. I was looking for a book like this. I will have to track one down! What a fun idea.

monica said...

That is a great idea! Love this muffin tin meal. Looks like she really enjoyed making the letters also!

Kelly said...

Fabulous! I think this is great. Does the book show upper and lower case? I think it's great either way!

Wonder Mom said...

No stinkin' way- this is SO AWESOME! I really enjoy all the "building materials" you provided! Gonna have to try this...

Jamie said...

This is an awesome idea! I want to put this book on my wish list for Dawson. I have never heard of it before. Awesome, awesome, awesome tin!

Michelle, Muffin Tin Mom said...

As everyone has already stated, I am just in LOVE with you tin. It is such a clever turn on the theme!

And just beautifully photographed.

klie0500 said...

This is way cute. I can't wait to try this.

artsy_momma said...

That is such a neat idea! i have been looking for alphabet shaped pasta with no luck.... we will have to do this instead :)

Michelle said...

This is an amazing MTM lunch! I would love a copy of this book, I am thinking about getting it for Emily for her birthday. I have read good things about it on other blogs too!

Melissa: Mother to 3 Little Sprouts said...

That is the most amazing lunch! Great ideas! Thank you so much for sharing!

Vanessa said...

What a great idea! Where can I find this book?

Kristie Clower said...

that is so fancy! Love your tin.

Kelly said...

That is so creative!!!! My preschooler would love to do that. Thank you for the idea!

Wonder Mom said...

Ya know, I believe I could create an entire blog dedicated to Wonder Woman underoo models! You wouldn't believe the number of people who have told me they had the same underoos and had their pictures taken in them.

Wonder Woman truly makes the world a smaller place...

w said...

oh wow! i love it! playing with food is always fun. until it gets thrown.

Jenny in Utah said...

Seriously ... BRILLIANT!!! Absolutely love it and will be wanting to copy this one day (soon)! The book looks great, too!

Mommyof2girlz said...

What a wonderful idea! Happy MTM :)

vanessa said...

Thank you for all the kind words! I'm glad you all enjoyed this post. It was really easy and fun to put together. And while I do LOVE the book, it really is not necessary in order to do a lunch activity like this--you just need the food pieces and any sort of picture of a letter (flash cards, alphabet books, magazines, etc. ) or even a magnet for your child to look at for a model.

However, if you DO want a copy of the book, I found my copy at Learning Express (a toy store), but also found them for sale at Amazon--I linked to it in my post--just click on the title of the book and it will take you right to it!

vanessa said...

Oh! And someone asked if the book features both capital and lower case letters--it actually only features capital letters, but Juliet took artistic license and created a few lower case letters. (A little g was easier to make than the big one.)

The Activity Mom said...

Great idea! Love it!

Sun-Kissed Scholars said...

W-o-w!!! I've never even seen or heard of the book. It sounds wonderful.
And the muffin tin lunch for letter-making is a fabulous idea!! I may just use this tomorrow.

Sherry said...

super cute idea! Love the fact you let her play w her food!

Saints and Spinners said...

Is it bad that I'm now craving gummy fruit?1 I've not seen How to Build an A, but I will look for it. I am reminded of the 6th grade project of building molecule models with gum drops and toothpicks.

Mama to 3 Blessings said...

very nice - I am going to have to look into getting that book for my toddler. Thank you! :)

Eva said...

what a great idea!

Jackie said...

I have seen that book and have it on my wish list. I love your food version!! What a great idea!!

Chels said...

Whoa- comment heaven on this post! Very creative muffin tin lunch and activity! Love it!

Infant Bibliophile said...

I love this idea! My son would too.

SkylarKD said...

Great idea!
For a paper version, I found some build-a-letter templates here:
http://tiredneedsleep.blogspot.com/2009/10/build-letter-templates.html

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