The Family Resource Center Library offers an array of materials designed to help children learn how to read. This blog instructs a parents, teachers, and caregivers on how to use the "Learn the Alphabet" series. (If you are wondering when children are ready to begin learning the alphabet, read my previous blogs that briefly or extensively answer that question.) There are six kits in total, and optimally you would progress through them in order.
Unless your child shows that they already know the letter sounds, encourage and entice them to repeat these activities many times. Children learn through repetition and practice. Do not feel like you need to introduce all six activities all at once; we typically stop after one, two, or three depending on the child.
We intentionally divided the letters of the alphabet into groups of four to six, as memorizing 26 shapes and sounds at once overwhelms children.
Step One: Sandpaper Letters
Trace the sandpaper letter and make the sound the letter makes (NOT the name). Invite your child to try.
Step Two: Sound Cards
Invite your child to find the matching sound card to place on the letter. For example, "/a/ /a/ apple" goes on the "a" sandpaper letter. Say "/a/ /a/ apple" out loud, and prompt your child to echo you.
Step Three: Visual Discrimination
Invite your child to sort the letter strips. I usually have children sort the strips on top of the sandpaper letters, but you could also use cups.
Step Four: Object Matching
Help your child sort the objects by beginning sound.
Step Five: Picture Matching
Help your child sort the pictures by beginning sound. These cards are "self correcting," meaning that your child can check their work by flipping over the cards.
Step Six: Sounding Out Words
Help your child sound out the words using the movable alphabet. This activity also incorporates letter sounds from previous kits.
Reserve your "Learn the Alphabet!" kit today!