As promised, Bottle Cap ABCs! Many thanks to my local Starbucks for collecting all these caps for me. If you are interested in trying these activities or Bottle Cap Math, ask your local coffee shop to save some for you! … Continue reading
I love finding something in an office supply store, taking it home, giving it to my boys and then watching what they do with it. I gave my youngest a few pads of sticky notes the other day and he … Continue reading
Word Family Practice Tube There I was– faced with another empty container that I just couldn’t throw away. It was calling to me– “Make me into something wonderful.” I answered, “I will!” And then walked away thinking what the heck … Continue reading
Last night I cut out some letters for my son and threw them on the table. I was planning on thinking of a few activities we could do with the letters to practice his letter recognition and letter sounds. As I looked a the colorful alphabet laying on the table, I had a idea…
Around the Table ABC
I took the letters I had cut out and arranged them around our dining room table. I put on our Alphabet CD and had my son circle the table, car in hand. As he went around the table “driving” his car, I stopped the music. Wherever his car stopped, he had to name the letter and the sound it makes. Then we did it again, but this time with his new toy bunny hopping around the table.
Animal Alphabet Sort
Next, I dumped out all of his small plastic animals and told him that we were going to put each animal on the letter that begins its name. So, we took the platypus and put in on the “p” and the kangaroo on the “k” etc.
Household Alphabet Sort
Our last activity with our letters around the table (we did this a different day), was to take things we found around the house and put them on the letter that starts its name. We put soap on the letter “s” and feathers and flowers on the letter “f” etc.
26 Letters Pick Up
I will admit that I tried to play 26 Letters Pick Up with my son, but he wanted no part. He thought it was too much like cleaning up and he opted out. My dog, on the other hand, looks like she wanted to play…:) What do you think?
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I recently had a dear friend ask me for some suggestions for helping her son recognize the letters of the alphabet. I proceeded to write a lengthy email with all my best ideas and then thought, hey, I just wrote a blog post! So, here are my thoughts about teaching your child his letters.
Learn and Sing the Alphabet Song
Sing: Sing, sing, sing, sing the Alphabet Song. Sing it fast, sing it slow, sing it high, sing it low!
Alphabet Song CD: I searched out a bunch of different versions of the Alphabet Song and made our very own Alphabet CD. My kids are huge music fans and this was very helpful. Here are a few different versions we like:
- Crazy ABCs from Snacktime by the Barenaked Ladies;
- Alligators All Around from Really Rosie soundtrack
- Chicka Chicka Boom Boom from the recording with Ray Charles
- Baa Baa Black Sheep/ABCs Songs for Wiggleworms by various artists
- ABCs from Ralph’s World by Ralph
- A You’re Adorable by Martha Alexander, Buddy Kaye and Fred Wise
Read ABC books: There are a gazillion out there written for varying age levels and interests. Don’t expect your child to necessarily learn the alphabet from these books. They are usually more interested in the story or the action. That said, your child WILL pick up some alphabet related concepts while reading whether it is obvious or not. Some of our favorites are:
- Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin Jr
- Eating the Alphabet by Lois Ehlert
- Alligators All Around by Maurice Sendak
- The Alphabet Tree by Leo Leoni
- A You’re Adorable by Martha Alexander, Buddy Kaye and Fred Wise
- Alphabet Rescue by Audrey and Bruce Wood
- The Sleepy Alphabet by Melissa Sweet
- Alligator Alphabet by Stella Blackstone
- A is for Annabelle by Tasha Tudor
- B is for Bulldozer: A Construction ABC by June Sobel
- Alphabeep: A Zipping, Zooming ABC Book by Deborah Pearson.
- Hang it Up: Simply hang one up and talk about it throughout the day. For example, “Did you notice that the letter A looks like a tent?” or “I think the letter S looks like a snake, what do you think?”
- Make it Yourself and Hang it Up: If you are feeling creative, you can create your own and have your child help you hang it up. You can do it all at once, or better yet, do a few letters a day and talk about how each letter looks and sounds. You can also have your child anticipate which letters will be put up the next day by singing or saying the alphabet and listening for what comes next.
- ABC Pictures: Cut out (or draw) pictures to go with each letter and hang them up.
- Sing and Point: Sing the alphabet song and point to the letters. Give your child a “teacher pointer” and have him recite the alphabet as he points to the letters. Anytime a child gets “play” teacher is great because you can really see what he knows and he gets to see what you know as well!
- Play “I Spy the Letter”: Say to your child, “I Spy the letter M” and have your child point to the letter M. Be sure to give him a turn to say “I spy the letter ___” and you have to point to it.
- Alphabet Treasure Hunt: Try an Alphabet Treasure Hunt from Playdough to Plato
- BIG Alphabet Games: Write the letters of the alphabet on the sidewalk (or you can write them on paper) and try these ideas: Letter Jump– Jump from letter to letter and say the name of the letter you land on; Rock Toss– Using the same letters, have your child toss a rock and name the letter it lands on; Letter Mix-Up– Lay the letter out on the ground out of order and have your child put them in ABC order. Note– All these games can be used to practice letter sounds as well. Simply say the letter and its sound when landing on a letter.
- Alphabet Hop: Print out the Alphabet Hop game and play it together. For a copy, email me at email@example.com
- Magazine Hunt: Search for the letters of the alphabet in magazines. Cut them out and make an ABC collage or simply circle them as you go.
- Letters on the Go: Try Letters on the Go from No Time for Flashcards
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