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Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Helping children write and recognize letters

Sweetpea can sing you her ABCs without a hitch, but she has struggled somewhat with letter recognition and writing - probably because I'm not quite sure what approach to take in teaching her...so recently I came up with an idea that is working well and I wanted to share it!

We love to craft in the problem solvin' house, and there's nothing like glue {and even better, glitter!} to get Sweetpea jumping up and down excited to create. Now that the weather has warmed up, I've moved the messy crafts outside onto a drop cloth. Mama can breathe a bit easier and our craft sessions inevitably last longer this way. It's also nice to be able to rinse off in the baby pool afterward!

While Sweetpea has been dripping and smearing glue and glitter to her heart's content, I've been making letter sheets like the one above. One sheet for each letter, and once they dry I put them in a plastic sleeve and into our new alphabet binder. The sleeves are perfect for two reasons - they help contain the glitter, and they allow Sweetpea to trace the letters as she practices. Using a dry erase marker allows her to practice over and over on the same sheet, and she can "feel" the letter with her finger and with the marker as she traces. I've also been adding pictures that she can hopefully identify, and as she practices making her letters we think of as many words that start with that letter as we can.

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Michelle said...

Very nice! Smart Momma. See if you can find anything with Jolly Phonics, too, as they do a great job with letter recognition and phonics for each letter, too. And yay to messy crafts. Can I send my wee ones over? :)

Nina said...

I'm not too into teaching my son his letters and reading (he's 2.5) because I think people go overboard with them having to read before they are ready, I want him to enjoy not just get good grades and really, my mother did nothing more than read to us and I could read by 3 so...this is supported by a book (and the many studies he quotes) I'm reading now "the read aloud handbook" by jim trelease (I think is his last name). that being said we read alot and he already recognizes some words and "reads" me stories. something I did do (beside my reading to him at least 30 min a day since he was born) - added a few letter recognition games to my itouch and made up two sets of letters...one I put on the ground letter side up. the other I hold and show him the letter, we talk about words that start with it, and then he finds it on the ground. he gets burnt out if I push too hard and doesn't get through the whole alphabet but again, I'm going for enjoyment and a lifetime of reading and learning rather than wanting to prove his brillant to others (I already know he is ;))

phonics if of the devil, imo. (no offense intended to anyone that uses it but really, we push our kids too hard in the us for something that really will come naturally but if its forced they will not enjoy and will stop reading) and someone offered me some dvd "my baby can read" and I politely declined.