How do you feel about teaching your preschooler to write his letters? For some, that sounds about as fun as a twelve-hour car ride.
With the preschooler.
But guess what?
Teaching kids to write the alphabet can be fun!
Today I had a bunch of ideas in mind to teach my Four to write the letter K. But I have this habit of getting things together and then misplacing them.
It’s kind of like when I was teaching and we’d all take a break to help the teacher find the stapler.
I’m working on it.
But today I realized that I didn’t have to have piles of ideas… I could set them all out on the table and let my preschooler complete each fine motor activity one by one. It was a hit!
I had a set of ideas I wanted to use. I set up the stations and called my Four to get to work – I mean, fun. 🙂
I had organized the table so that it progressed from easiest to hardest activity.
1. First he wrote the letter K in shaving cream. My kids are squeamish about getting their hands messy, but – surprise! He loved it. I was on hand with a spatula to smooth out the shaving cream so he could write again and again.
2. After washing his hands, my Four wrote a K in colored sand. Don’t you love this wooden tray? It was part of another toy that I now use as our writing box. We put in some sand, cornmeal, salt or sugar – then write and shake when we’re ready to write again. None of my kids can resist it.
3. I set out one long straw and two short ones. My Four made a K in a few seconds.
4. This one was a bit tougher because I set out four pencils. Why the fourth one? My Four soon realized that he needed two pencils to make the long side.
5. Next was play dough.
6. It was getting tougher because he had to create without any kind of framework. This might have been too hard for my Three, but my Four was ready for it.
7. The challenge of making a letter with stickers is that you can’t fix your mistakes!
8. Now it was time for some traditional handwriting work. He started with this simple page — Letter K of all Sizes. You can get the page here.
Next, he traced very large K’s on two fat lines. Get yours here.
Finally he did this page, which starts out with a lot of support and gets much harder by the last line. Get your copy here.
330 Handwriting Worksheets
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Alphabet Curriculum for Preschool
Our curriculum includes lessons for teaching both upper and lowercase letter names and sounds. You’ll get three lessons per letter, built-in review, simple handwriting practice, rhyming, syllable counting, phonemic awareness, and a whole lot more!
You have such wonderful ideas for each alphabet letter! As I teach my young grandsons their alphabet letters and sounds, I always start with your website when I plan my multiple intelligence activities. I love these learning stations and will definitely incorporate them into lessons with the 2 year old and 4 year old grandsons.
I am a mother of 4 yrs old daughter and kind of distress as my child got the homework to write the small letter h and the number 3 but she could not write it so i taught her with dots. Can anyone share some more tips as i am working and find it hard these days and going through a lot.
Hello, Shruti! I’m sorry it took me some time to get back with you. You asked about how to help your daughter write the number 3. You said you taught her with dots, and that’s great! That’s what I do with my kids before they are actually ready to write the letter on paper. Put some salt or sugar on a plate and have her try it that way with her finger. You may have to move her hand for her. When she is good at that, she might be ready to try on paper again. Start with a really big 3 with dots and make it smaller and smaller until she can write it on her own. She’ll get there — it’s very normal for a 4 year old to have trouble with letters and numbers, especially the #3. It’s a tough one. I hope you are doing well!
Thanks for sharing your nice ideas! I am a mom of a 4 years old son with special needs. He knows all the letters and numbers. But when he writes he takes a whole page for only one or two letters if I don’t move his hand. Can you share any tips with me?
Hello, Ziku! Here is my sister’s tip for parents of preschoolers. (She taught kindergarten for a number of years.) Get a pad of paper, and each day have your child write his name on a new page. (If he doesn’t know how, write it for him to copy or trace.) Make this a routine – for him to do it every day. As time goes on it his name will get smaller and smaller. Eventually you can draw a line for him to write on.
I realize things will be different for your son because he has special needs. Do you think this idea might help?
Hey, I wanted to let you know I featured these ideas in my hands on literacy ideas post for mom’s library on ready-set-read today. Thanks again for linking up!
Thank you so much for the feature, Jackie!
We use stations all the time, but this is a great idea! I will definitely try it for my preschoolers this year. Thanks so much for sharing at Mom’s Library!
I hope you have fun with it! Thanks so much for checking it out.
These are great. I’d love to practice / review letter formations with my kindergarten kiddo, but he is DONE with any paper pencil practice when he gets home from school. I think we’ll try one of these each day for a super quick after school activity. Thanks for sharing.
Yes, Jackie – these are great for quick and painless letter practice 🙂
Hi, how would you do letters with curves?
Sorry for taking so long to reply to this comment, Sarah! You asked about how to form letters with curves. I have used things like yarn, ribbon, pipe cleaners, or cooked spaghetti. We’re just moving into the curved letters so I’m sure we’ll find some other ways too!
This is great! I will file this one away for the future as we are a little ways off from this but it seems like a great activity for another year from now or so! Thank you so much for sharing!
(Visiting your awesome site from the Gathering Place Week 32)
Thank you for checking it out, Jenn!
As always, another great idea, Anna. This is fantastic. I love the repetition of writing the same letter, but with different tactile options. I think this will help my son with special needs, too. Thank you!
Thank you, Caroline! By the way I LOVE your good morning chart idea. You’ve inspired me to look into getting a corkboard for the wall across from the kitchen table. Breakfast would be the perfect time to share some of those great ideas you’ve got.
This is great and I think my kids will love it. I’ve never thought of doing stations at home before. Thanks for the idea!
I’d never thought of it until now either 🙂 I think we’ll find lots more ways to use the idea!
Debbie @ http://kidsbibledebjackson.blogspot.com/
Love the ideas! Pinned it! Thanks for sharing at TGIF!
Thanks for the pin!
Katie @ Gift of Curiosity
I love this Anna! The idea of stations is great. We’ve usually done our alphabet work on a very small table in our living room, but I think I’m going to have to try this out at our kitchen table because I’m sure my kids would enjoy this!
I hope you have fun with it, Katie!
That’s a great idea. I have heard of some of these ideas individually–especially in using with practicing spelling words. But I love the around the table stations idea.
Thanks, Cheryl – I hope you get a chance to try it!
I totally need to do this. I just don’t feel like I’m ever organized enough to set up stations.
Believe me, Shonda, I get it – I have WAY too many piles around here and not enough organization! Actually this really came about BECAUSE I didn’t feel organized. Setting everything out on the table was easier than preparing things to go out individually 🙂
Love your ideas and since this topic is so relevant to Alphabet Anatomy, wanted to share with your readers that our first book, Meet the Capital Letters, has a rhyming verse for each letter that instructs on the letters’ shape, sound, and how to write them! Example: “With her right arm stretched up, K can fly her kite high. Her right leg sticks forward for balance, that’s why.” Kids gain an effective visual and audio means for recalling each letter. We’re also on YouTube! 🙂
Sounds great, Linda! I’ll have to check out your YouTube video.
I love It…I might try adding a timer to that idea to spice up the fun:)
That would definitely make it more interesting – especially for older kids. Thanks for stopping by, Dinah!
Charise @ I Thought I Knew Mama
This looks so fun! Thanks for sharing!
(Visiting via the Tender Moments hop.)
Thanks, Charise! Love your post about helping siblings get along – some great tips!
An alphabet writing station sounds like fun! I’m always looking for interesting ways to hone fine motor skills and this fits the bill. I think even just one or two of these would entertain my 4-year-old!
I hope you get a chance to try it, Emma!