Learning about letters is more than learning letter names and singing the alphabet song. As children learn to read and write, they begin to notice certain features and characteristics of letters.
Using magnetic letters gives children practice sorting and spelling their name and other important words. There are many more fun things to do with magnetic letters to develop literacy skills and awareness of print.
Here are some activities you can do with your child:
- Encourage your child to play with letters on a refrigerator.
- Making Names - create your child’s name, then mix it up and try to make it again. You can also try writing names on cards and having your child build names on the cards.
- On a cookie sheet, place circles of different colors that correspond to those in your letter set. Have your child sort the letters by color.
- Sorting - How many ways can you sort the letters? Here are some ways:
- sort all of the letters that have a ball (e.g., o, p, b, q …);
- stick letters (e.g., y, l, k, w…);
- curvy letters (e.g., s, u, m, c …);
- by colour (e.g., name all the letters that are red, blue…);
- uppercase letters and lowercase letters (A, B, C, D…a, b, c, d …)
- Match the letter to the sound. For example, print out different pictures of objects (ie: a basketball). Have your child match the letter ''B'' onto the basketball.
- Making New Words – build a simple word like sun – then try changing sun to make a new word
like run, bun, fun. Try with other simple words can, man, fan, in, bin, tin etc.)
- Rhyme Time – make simple 3 letter words and try to create some that rhyme (e.g., bug-hug,
mop-top, cat-fat…). Say the rhymes together.
- Print out simple 3 letter words, leaving one letter blank. Have your child fill in the blank. (ie: p_n - your child would put the letter ''e'' in the blank spot).
- Alphabet Soup – pour the letters into a small bowl. Using a spoon, have your child scoop and say the letter.
- Alphabet Parking Lot - Set up a cardboard sheet with parking lot lines in it. Each spot will have a letter of the alphabet assigned. Write a corresponding letter in permanent marker on the top of the toy cars. Your child has to park the car with the matching letter into the correct parking spot.
- Set up 3 categories on a cookie sheet. ''Straight'', ''Both'', and ''Curved''. Your child will then place the letters that fall into the corresponding category. (ie: ''Straight'' would have letters ''x'', ''l'', ''k'' etc..., ''Curved'' would have the letters ''s'', ''o'' and ''c'', whereas the category ''Both'', would have letters ''e'', ''q'', ''b'' and so forth).
- ABCD….WXYZ- spill out the magnetic letters and build the uppercase and lowercase alphabet
together. Then sing it out loud.
- Exploring Words from our World – cut out and collect examples of words children notice in their world. (e.g., Cheerios, Goldfish crackers, Tim Hortons, Smarties etc.). Children enjoy building these words with magnetic letters.