Nicer version of paint chips- slide to make a word // picture from: http://servingpinklemonade.blogspot.com/2010/06/reading-game.html link is to another version of idea (via happy hooligans FB) "We make our beginning blends blue, our endings green, our vowels yellow and random consonants red and purple. This makes it easy for me to find what I am looking for without a whole lot of digging."
Place the letters into the mixing bowl and have the students help you stir the alphabet soup. Each student then gets a turn the dip a letter or letters into their soup bowls. After they dip they identify the letters, letter sounds or both