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Tuesday, July 30, 2013


People often ask me how to pronounce “Alphardy.”  Guess what?  It doesn’t matter!  What does matter is that it is a powerful way to review alphabet letters or introduce letters and sounds at the beginning of the school year.  A teacher recently remarked that some of her children had no previous experience with letters or sounds before they started kindergarten.  She said she introduced “Alphardy” the first day of school and sang it every day.  Then, when she administered the DIBELS test they had a clue about sounds.  If you don’t know this song, you definitely need it in your song library.  If you have sung this song for years, I have a few new ways to extend it. 

Alphardy  (“Sing to Learn” CD)
A for apple /a/ /a/ /a/  (Pretend fist is an apple.)
B for bounce /b/ /b/ /b/  (Bounce a ball.)
C for cut /c/ /c/ /c/  (Open and close index and middle fingers as if cutting.)
D for dig /d/ /d/ /d/  (Pretend to dig.)
E – elbow  (Point to elbow.)
F – fan  (Fan self with hand.)
G – gallop  (Gallop in place.)
H – hop  (Hop on one foot.)
I – itch  (Scratch self.)
J – jump  (Jump up and down.)
K – kick  (Little kicks with foot.)
L – love  (Hug self.)
M – munch  (Move mouth as if eating.)
N – nod  (Nod head.)
O – opera  (Extend arms and sing dramatically.)
Q – quiet  (Index finger on lips.)
R.  – run  (Run in place.)
S – sew  (Pretend to hold a needle and sew.)
T – talk  (Open and close fingers like a mouth.)
U – upside  (Lean over.)
V – volley  (Hands in air and pretend to volley a ball.)
W – wiggle   (Wiggle all over.)
X – x-ray   (Make “x” with arms.)
Y – yawn  (Extend arms and pretend to yawn.)
Z – zigzag  (Make an imaginary “z” in the air.)
Letter sounds are all you need.
Put them together and you can read!  (Hold palms together and open like a book.)

*You can download this book at  Click on “free activities” and scroll to the bottom of the page.  Glue the cover to a pocket folder and insert the pages in clear sheet protectors so it will last for years. 

*Make the black and white student version for children to take home and sing with their families.
*Run off this chart (January, 2010) for each student and glue to a file folder.  Children can use this for choral singing or for independent work at the listening center.  If you give them a pretzel stick or Bugle for a pointer they’ll get a little snack at the end of the song!

*Introduce sign language with this song.  Visit to learn manual signs.

*Insert children’s names in the song: 
            D for Darren /d/ /d/ /d/
            E for Erin /e/ /e/ /e/
            S for Sammy /s/ /s/ /s/
            H for Hannah /h/ /h/ /h/

*Adapt the words for environmental print:
            M for MacDonald’s /m/ /m/ /m/
            L for Legos /l/ /l/ /l/

*Take color words, number words, or high frequency words and sing them.
            R for red /r/ /r/ /r/
            P for purple /p/ /p/ /p/