Category Archives: alphabet books

Traditional Thursdays: Chicka Chicka Boom Boom


Some may not consider Chicka Chicka Boom Boom to be along the classic genre of children’s books. However, this was a book I grew up with and it is very endearing to me. Chicka Chicka Boom Boom was written by Bill Martin Jr and John Archambault and illustrated by Lois Ehlert. It was published in 1989 by Little Simon which is part of Simon & Schuster Children’s Publishing Company.


Children were unaware as they were reciting along with the book in its rhythmic cadence that they were actually learning the alphabet. As a child, I loved the competition of which letter would get to the top unaware that I was learning the alphabet.

The book is about a group of friends going on an adventure that ends up with them racing to the top. The reader experienced anticipation to never knowing which additional letters was eventually going to crash the tree. So again it drew on children’s imagination which lead to discussion with the reader and the child.


The illustrator made the book bold and colorful while relating it to the reader by providing some human elements to the letters. For example, when they fall out of the coconut tree the letters had injuries like any other child might experience. So some of the letters ended up with injuries like “skinned-knee D and stubbed-toe E and patched-up F.”

An important lesson this book teaches is being inclusive. The reader sees throughout the book that no letter is ever left behind not even “tag-along K.”


This book allows any child’s imagination to imagine the adventure always begins anew each day even if “A is out of bed.”

P.S.: For all of you teachers or aspiring teachers out there. There are some different lessons, crafts, activities on Pinterest that go along with Chicka Chicka Boom Boom if you want to use the book in your classroom.

-Kendall Shaw

V is for Volunteer


V is for Volunteer: A Tennessee Alphabet

Written by Michael Shoulders
Illustrated by Bruce Langton

This book is part of a great series of state alphabet books. The picture book goes through each letter of the alphabet and names something special about Tennessee. Children of all ages will enjoy this book. For younger students, practicing the alphabet is a great exercise and the pictures are fun to see. For older students, the information about the state of Tennessee is a great resource. Examples include:

B is for Beale Street

E is for Elvis

N is for Nashville

Each page comes with an informative description of the person, place, or subject being labeled.
Other books in the series include:
M is for Magnolia

S is for Sunshine

All of the books in this state alphabet series have beautiful illustrations and are fun to read! They are very educational and would be great to use in any classroom for State reports or Social Studies lessons.
Happy Reading!