Poke the Alphabet is a terrific hands-on alphabet activity for preschoolers!
I was curious about which letters my newly five-year-old could identify, and which ones we wanted to spend time more time on. So rather than drilling him with flashcards, I created this hands-on alphabet activity instead.
Turns out he dug it (no pun intended) and I got to become a little more familiar with which letters he could automatically recognize. Love when it is a win for all!
RELATED: Hands-on activities should be kept simple. Our activity cards are a great resource for easy ideas like this.
Incorporate the alphabet into your every day
I like to keep alphabet toys on hand for the boys to use in their play. As my children become familiar with how letters look, they also begin to match letters with their letter names.
Letters are made from lines and curves, which is another fundamental conversation to have with kids about the alphabet!
The more exposure children have to the alphabet, the more likely they are to make connections.
How do you teach the alphabet to preschoolers in a fun way?
Learning the alphabet is fun when it is hands-on. We want our preschoolers to feel more comfortable than feel pressured as they become more familiar with letters. We help children learn the alphabet when we incorporate the whole child and all the ways to learn into their play.
- Introduce one letter at a time when doing preschool at home.
- Focus on one letter at a time for an entire week.
- Hang the letters that have been introduced at eye-level for children to revisit again.
- Incorporate songs when learning the letters.
- Read funny poems that are associated with the letter learned.
- Create letter puppets that are aligned to the letter sound. For example, Mr. T may have giant teeth or Ms. B may be blowing a giant bubble with bubble gum.
- Incorporate movement when searching for letters.
- Add sensory play with these alphabet ice cube trays.
There is a bonus with hands-on alphabet activity!
Not only does this risk-free way to play help me better understand the letters my preschooler can identify, but it also helps strengthen his hands for fine motor strength!
As my newly five-year-old squeezes the tongs, he is actually preparing for writing and pencil grip. His job was to punch through the tissue paper and find the letter that was hidden inside.
I like to use simple ideas like this as a Breakfast Invitation to begin the day with play. First time hearing about Breakfast Invitations? Start here! Once you see how these learning games for kids inspire creativity you won’t look back!
Let’s get going! Who is ready to set this alphabet activity up?
I place alphabet magnets into each section of the muffin tin. Mine has enough room for 12 letters.
Cover the muffin tin with tissue paper. I flip it over to tape the paper to the bottom of the pan. Since the alphabet letters are magnetic, they stick! Genius, right?
Create a quick grid with painter’s tape to the right side of the setup. That way your child will practice taking from the left, and moving to the right – just like we read and write!
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