Around ages 3 or 4, your child will start to identify letters and recognize that those letters are connected with a particular sound. Incorporating letter recognition and spelling activities into your preschooler’s daily life can be entertaining and help strengthen her literacy skills. Offering your child plenty of opportunities to use various mediums to spell and write her name keeps her interested and engaged while she learns.
Things You'll Need
- Name tracers
- Alphabet cards
- Sticky-backed foam letters
- Chalkboard and chalk
- Letter crackers or cookies
- Foam bath time letters
- Soap crayons
Create some name tracers for your preschooler. You can do this on the computer or by hand. The letter for his name should be at least 1 inch tall and made with a dotted font. Each sheet should contain at least three or four copies of his name. Make several copies of the name tracer and have him complete one sheet each day.
Grab a pack of alphabet letters and pull out the letters of your child’s name. Ask her to put the letters in order to spell her name. If she doesn’t know how to do this by herself, you can write her name on a piece of paper to act as her guide.
Label some of your preschooler’s possessions so he can recognize his name when he sees it. Write his name on some of his toys, inside his jacket, on his cereal box and on his lunch pack.
Provide plenty of opportunities for your child to practice writing her name. Use sticky-backed foam letters to spell out your child’s name on the top frame of a small chalkboard. Give her colored chalk and let her write and rewrite her name. Letter crackers or cookies are an educational snack. Have her put the letters in order and then eat them. Periodically ask her to identify a random letter for fun. Foam letters for bath time can be stuck to the wall and arranged into her name. Soapy crayons are also effective for bath-time spelling. These are safe for writing on the tub or shower wall and rinse away with water. Just make it clear that this is the only time she can write on any wall.
Implement letter recognition into his daily life. As you drive him to school or run errands, ask him to point out letters that are in his name. When he points one out, ask him what letter it is and what sound it makes.
Tips & Warnings
- The trick is to make it fun, engaging and entertaining. If you pressure her or criticize her efforts, she might get discouraged.
- Offer plenty of praise throughout her spelling activities. This will help boost her self-esteem and confidence.
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