Best Picture Books Celebrating Wordplay
Lexie the Word WranglerThe Boy Who Loved WordsThe Great Dictionary CaperThe Word CollectorBetty’s Burgled Bakery: An Alliteration AdventureTop Dog: And Other Doggone Delightful ExpressionsWordplay: TOON Level 1 (Toon Books)E-mergencyTake Away the AAlphabetter (Peace Dragon)Noah Webster’s Fighting WordsMiss Alaineus: A Vocabulary Disaster
P is for Pterodactyl: The Worst Alphabet Book Ever by Raj Haldar and Chris Carpenter, illustrated by Maria Beddia
You will LOVE this book — a top choice on this list!! Get your kids, sit by the fire, and prepare to laugh your way through the wackiest alphabet book you’ll ever read. Because in this book, “A is for Aisle” and “H is for Heir“. Below each letter and illustration is a sentence describing each word such as, “M is for Mnemonic. // But now Mr. M. can’t remember why.” Isn’t this a delightful, hilarious treat for word enthusiasts of all ages?
Betty’s Burgled Bakery An Alliteration Adventure by Travis Nichols
Top Dog and Other Doggone Delightful Expressions by Carli Davidson
Word Play by Ivan Brunetti
What happens when you remove the letter A? Well, beast becomes best. How about the letter D? Dice becomes ice. Super funny wordplay with an unexpected plot!
The Boy Who Loved Words by Roni Schotter, illustrated by Giselle Potter
This beautiful picture book swells, sparkles, and percolates with Selig’s (also called Wordsworth’s) passion for words. “You too may find yourself lucky if, one day, while you are thinking or writing or simply speaking, the perfect word just seems to come to you. If so, you’ll know that Selig is near.”
Anagrams are words that when mixed up spell different words or phrases using all the letters. The authors make it easy to tell which are anagrams by putting the anagrams in similar fonts and tell the story of a mixed-up word world. Don’t you think this would be a fantastic book for an elementary classroom?
“Bring me to your AUNT. She’s A NUT.”
“Poor Grandma! What a VILE, EVIL way to LIVE.”
The Dictionary of Difficult Words by Jane Solomon, illustrated by Louise Lockhart
Want a mesmerizing wordplay book that is even better than a word-a-day calendar? This oversized dictionary contains the coolest selection of 400 words that kids will love to learn beginning with abecedarian (someone who is learning the alphabet) continuing to Zeppelin. Each letter gives readers about 15 new words to learn. This includes the word, pronunciation, part of speech, and definition. You’ll find haberdashery, ichthyologist, luddite and mugwump, mulligrubs, mumpsimus, and mishpocha. Read one of these words (or more) every day. Then try to use it at least a few times in a sentence. It won’t be too onerous and you won’t be ramfeezled; in fact, learning new words might just be a salubrious experience because you’ll soon become a sesquipedalian.
Start Your Own Word Collections
There are multiple ways to begin your own collections. Find a special container such as an empty jar like you see above.
Cut out words you LOVE in magazines.
Write down words that INTEREST you on note cards.
Be on the look out for UNUSUAL words in signs. Take photos.
Use sticky notes to write down FAVORITE and WONDERFUL words in the stories you read — picture books or chapter books.
Keep organized with a notebook or container.
Use Your Wonderful Words
Make up silly words of your own! Take two words and combine them together.
Write found poetry using your new words.
Play these five favorite word play games!
What are your favorite things to do with words?
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