Matching & Fishing Game with Atlantic Animal ABC: Itsy Bitsy Nimbus Book Club

Thanks to Nimbus Publishing for sponsoring this post so that I can help you raise little readers who love local books. As always, all opinions are my own. Please see my Disclosures for more information.

The Atlantic Animal ABC book by Halifax’s own artist, Angela K. Doak, is our pick for the Itsy Bitsy Nimbus Book Club this month. This book offers a great chance for kids to practice their ABCs and learn about wild creatures local to our region.

This fishing and matching game was inspired by the book’s brightly coloured artwork and teaches little kids their letters and develops their fine motor skills (not to mention it’s lots of fun!) and is the first of our two activities for this book club.

What you’ll need:

  • Photocopied images of animals from the book (a few or all of them depending on how big you want to make the game)

  • Scissors

  • Glue

  • Metal paper clips (make sure they’re not plastic coated)

  • Magnetic fishing rod (we used one from a puzzle but you can easily make one with a chopstick or regular stick, some string, and a magnet tied to the bottom)

  • Atlantic Animal ABC book

Cut out each image, animal name and corresponding letter. Put a paper clip on the top of each animal shape, then lay the animals out face down. Lay the names and letters face up near them.

Give the child the fishing rod and let them use the fishing rod to “catch” one of the animals by the paper clip.

Once an animal has been caught, have them look through the book to find the matching animal.

Then have them look through the letters and words to find the matching name and letter for the animal.

Have the child glue the matching name and letter to the back of the animal and set aside. Continue until all the animals have been caught and identified! Another angle is to have the child pick out an animal they want to find from the book and then “catch and release” animals until the find the right match. This will help them work on memory skills as well.

To continue playing this game after the names and letters are added, you can have the children place the game pieces animal side down and then try to match each animal in the book with the letter before flipping it over to help them with their letter identifying skills. Older kids can practice their reading by finding the matching name.

As a further extension, and a way to add a physical element to the game, you can hide the animals around a room and then have the child(ren) go searching for the animals and matching with the page in the book until they’ve found all twenty-six.

But, wait, there’s more! We’ve actually created TWO activities inspired by Atlantic Animal ABC for our Itsy Bitsy Nimbus Book Club and our second activity will be posted later this week! You can see our full list of book extension activities here.

You can purchase a copy of this book at local retailers such as Nimbus Publishing, Nurtured Products for Parenting, Bookmark II, Woozles, Chapters and Amazon (affiliate link).

The official launch of this book is happening this weekend at Nurtured Products for Parenting on May 20 at 3pm – come on by!


You can also enter to win a copy of Atlantic Animal ABC provided by Nimbus Publishing AND a 5×7 print of your favourite Atlantic animal artwork by Angela K. Doak, who created the images in the book. Enter by hopping over to our Facebook page and following the directions to get your name in the virtual hat! Contest ends May 23, 2017 at 8 p.m. AST and winner will be chosen by a random draw. Winners must live in North America and be the age of majority in their province.

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