Today I’m sharing a set of free alphabet action cards – in two different versions!
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A few months ago, I finished teaching my Three the alphabet through our simple letter of the week activities.
She loved it, and is busy writing letters wherever she goes – as you can see in the above story about a “cweepy monster.” 🙂
One thing she hasn’t picked up on is letter sounds; she knows just a few of them. Her older siblings learned these relatively easily as we did our alphabet activities, so I realized that I needed to try something new.
The trick is that it needs to be something that feels like playing, because I am not going to drill my three-year-old on letter sounds.
(Not that it would work anyway.)
As I was studying my book Phonics They Use, by Pat Cunningham, she suggested creating a set of alphabet exercise cards. When you use them enough, children start associating particular letters with an action and eventually learn each letter’s sound.
So … I gave it a try!
There are two versions of cards. When you print this set front to back, you get the lowercase letter on the front …
And you get the action on the back of the card.
G is for go!
R is for read.
X is sort for for mix. (That tricky letter x!)
A is for apple.
I know, I know. Apple isn’t an action word. The only one I could come up with was act, and that wasn’t something my Three was going to understand. I had to get creative with some of the short vowels, but they do have an action associated with them.
A … eat an apple
O… get on something
U… get under something
We had fun using the cards outdoors on a beautiful summer day, but they’re simple enough that you can do them inside, too. This is the other set of cards. They’re single-sided.
You can even “go” in a messy playroom.
Here’s our letter o card. Another one of those tricky letters whose key word isn’t exactly an action. Blame the alphabet.
Getting “on” a box lid.
E is for exercise. That’s a fun one!
So are they working?
Well, we’re having fun. And my Three is getting more practice recognizing lower case letters. I can’t say that it’s helped her learn her letter sounds yet. One thing I do is emphasize the letter sound each time we use a card. “M! /m/, /m/, March!”
We’ll get there. All in good time!
Here are some other ways to use the cards:
- Laminate the cards, hole punch the upper left corner, and put them on a ring. Then go through the cards one by one just for fun.
- Let your child be the teacher. He/she can name each letter, and you do the action. (My Three loves this.)
- After you’ve been doing the cards a while, see if your child can remember the action word before turning the two-sided card over.
- If you really want to use these cards to teach letter sounds, it’s wise to do just a few at a time. Make a big deal about each new key word. Act it out with props. Get silly!
- Lay the cards in alphabetical order on the floor.
- Just let your little one have fun playing!
So how will you use these cards? Let us know in the comments!
P.S. Yes, they ˆ come in both color and black and white.
Have you seen our best-selling letter of the week curriculum?
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