Books

An Inconvenient Alphabet, Ben Franklin & Noah Webster’s Spelling Revolution

ALPHA cover

Written by Beth Anderson
Illustrated by Elizabeth Baddeley
Simon & Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books
ISBN 9781534405554
September 25, 2018
Free Educator Guide from S&S
Additional Activity Packet

Amazon • Barnes & Noble • IndieBound Books-A-Million
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Do you ever wish English was eezeeyer to spell? Ben Franklin and Noah Webster did! Beth Anderson and the New York Times bestselling illustrator of I Dissent, Elizabeth Baddeley, tell the story of two patriots and their attempt to revolutionize the English alphabet.

Once upon a revolutionary time, two great American patriots tried to make life easier. They knew how hard it was to spell words in English. They knew that sounds didn’t match letters. They knew that the problem was an inconvenient English alphabet.

In 1786, Ben Franklin, at age eighty, and Noah Webster, twenty-eight, teamed up. Their goal? Make English easier to read and write. But even for great thinkers, what seems easy can turn out to be hard.

Children today will be delighted to learn that when they “sound out” words, they are doing eg-zakt-lee what Ben and Noah wanted.

Honors:
Finalist for Colorado Book Awards – Children’s Literature
School Library Journal’s Alternative Anticipated Children’s Books of Fall 2018 List
School Library Journal: Fuse 8 – 2018 American History List
Junior Library Guild Selection

Reviews:
“Both Anderson’s text and Baddeley’s illustrations are energetic and compelling… Deelytful and iloominaating for noo and seesuned reeders alyk.”   ~Kirkus

The combination of bold illustrations, humorous anecdotes, and fabulous storytelling makes this true tale anything but boring…a delightful, relatable, and eye-catchingly illustrated tale…  ~School Library Journal

“Thought-provoking and entertaining.” —School Library Connection

“Engaging…A comprehensible, lively read.” —Publishers Weekly

“Beautifully done…A great book to share with students learning about language.” ~PSLA Teaching and Learning – Literature Review: Elementary List

A bit about the writing:

 

Upcoming titles:

LIZZIE DEMANDS A SEAT: ELIZABETH JENNINGS FIGHTS FOR STREETCAR RIGHTS, illustrated by E.B. Lewis, Calkins Creek, Jan. 7, 2020.

“SMELLY” KELLY AND HIS SUPER SENSES: HOW JAMES KELLY’S NOSE SAVED THE NEW YORK CITY SUBWAY, illustrated by Jenn Harney, Calkins Creek, fall 2020.

TAD LINCOLN’S RESTLESS WRIGGLE; PANDEMONIUM, PATIENCE, AND PROTEST IN THE PRESIDENT’S HOUSE, illustrated by S.D. Schindler, Calkins Creek, fall 2021.

PRUDENCE WRIGHT AND THE MINUTE WOMEN, illustrated by Susan Reagan, Calkins Creek, spring 2022.