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What's the story?
ALPHABLOCKS videos are short (under five minutes) clips that help preschoolers learn letters and phonics. Each of the letters is its own cube-shaped character, and its letter hovers above the cubes in a clear container. The Alphablocks' personality and design are a nod to the letter's sound: "t" is a fancy British gentleman always pouring tea and saying "tuh"; "p" pops around the screen saying "puh"; "m" says "mmmmm" and is dressed like a chef. The storylines are based on the wordplay that happens when the characters rearrange themselves and turn into different words. In one episode, "i" and "n" join to become "in," and the letters get stuck inside a balloon. The letters combine to make "tin," "tip," and "pin" as they try to figure out how to get out of the balloon. Each episode focuses on a different set of letters and the different word combinations they can make.
Is it any good?
This is a series of short videos that help kids learn to read. The letter-characters each say their letter sound (like "cah" for C) instead of their letter name ("cee"), and speak primarily in words starting with their own letter. This phonics-based approach can be really helpful when kids are learning to read, and watching Alphablocks is a great way to reinforce letter sounds for preschoolers. There are a lot of clever details built into Alphablocks, like indicating a silent "e" by having the "e" character put on a disguise, or the "q" dragging a resentful "u" along next to it every time it appears. The stories are simple, but preschoolers will enjoy the show's playful approach to letters and words.
Talk to your kids about ...
In Alphablocks, the letters say their sounds (like "cah" for C) instead of their letter name ("cee"). This phonics-based approach helps kids when they learn to sound out words. When teaching letters to your child, it's a great idea to teach their letter sounds instead of just their names.
Do you have letter magnets, letter bath toys, or blocks with letters on them at home? Use them to see how different combinations make different words, like the letters do on Alphablocks.
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