We’re back with another simple activity that you can use at home with your children to help support the development of their early literacy skills! There are five practices that do this, and in this activity we’re focusing on reading, talking, and playing.
What do you need?
- Letters from the alphabet (alphabet magnets, cut outs from cardboard, foam letters, alphabet puzzle pieces etc…)
How does it work?
- On a large area of cement make write out each letter of the alphabet within its own box.
- On a tray or in a basket/container, collect any letters you might have around the house (alphabet fridge magnets, alphabet puzzle pieces, bath foam letters, wooden letters etc..)
- Have your child match each of the letters to the corresponding chalk box!
Pro-tip: No alphabet letters around the house? No problem! If you have cardboard from packaged goods (cereal boxes, online orders, cracker boxes etc…) you can make letters from it! Break down the box and open it up so that you see only the inner brown side of the (cereal) box. Trace or draw letters onto the cardboard and cut them out. Thicker paper also works for this or play-doh letters could work as well!
For younger children just starting to learn the alphabet, this will be a challenge and they will become easily distracted, but don’t worry! There are lots of ways to keep them involved with the game so they continue developing their letter recognition:
- Imagine the giant letters made of chalk are the “Mommy/Daddy” letters and all of the little letters we have in the basket are their babies. We have to get all of their babies back home with their caregivers as soon as we can!
- If your children like Paw Patrol, get them to pretend they are their favourite character from the show, helping these baby alphabet letters find their way home.
- Are they into PJ Masks or other superheroes? Get them to pretend there’s a villain taking over the world and the only way to stop them is by solving the alphabet puzzle by placing the matching letters on these mysterious ground markings!
- Maybe it’s a race! Challenge them to see how many letters they can place in a certain span of time.
If you want to get more creative, here are a few other variations!
Variation 1: Want to spice up the game and make it a little more fun? Create an alphabet hopscotch instead! Just like you would fill out the squares of a hopscotch with numbers, you will instead do it with letters of the alphabet. To get the letters into their correct box, the kids now have to do hopscotch to get there!
Variation 2: Get them to find items around the house that start with each letter of the alphabet. Then they need to match that item to the correct letter box. Example: they collect a book for the letter B, so they would bring a book and place it on the letter “B”.
Pro-tip: Sometimes you might have to take breaks, learning the alphabet can be hard work for kids! So, take a break and play something else outside, keep snacks on hand, but try to encourage coming back to the activity afterward!