Children seem to grow and develop right before our eyes. Many parents are at a loss when it becomes time to teach the “ABCs” to their toddler. Appropriate developmental skills for children involves learning their alphabet before they are Kindergarten age. Many children are still struggling with identifying the alphabet at the preschool age. Sometimes the basic methods of learning the ABCs just doesn’t cut it. You may have to make it more interesting for him or her to keep their attention. If you are one of those parents wondering how to teach your child to recognize letters of the alphabet, these ideas are for you.
Sing ABC songs for toddlers.
This tried and true method has been used for many years to teach the ABCs to toddlers. ABC songs for toddlers are not hard to find. It does not have to be the classic alphabet song that you may have heard in your childhood, either. Simply searching YouTube for “Alphabet Songs for Toddlers” produces several results. Some may be more attention grabbing to your toddler than the old classic ABC song.
Practice with alphabet puzzles for hands-on learners.
Some toddlers may do better learning if they have objects, like puzzle pieces, to hold and manipulate in their hands. If the puzzle pieces are individual letters, the visual search for the matching place can offer invaluable practice to teach ABCs. These puzzles are easy to find at just about any toy store.
Read books about the alphabet to your toddler.
Many books are available with rhythm and rhymes to enhance the learning process. Dr. Seuss’s ABC and Chicka Chicka Boom Boom are two of the more common books about the ABCs. These classics have been loved by children for many years. Because these books use the letters individually in the text, often as characters, they can help your child to realize that the letter symbol has meaning. Also, Scholastic provides a list of “6 Great ABC Books”, linked in the sources section.
Point out letters in everyday life.
Toddlers are constantly learning, even as they are going about everyday life with their parents. Letters are everywhere, including on signs in the grocery store and post office. Point those letters out to your toddler, and ask if they can identify them for you. Your toddler may start to point out letters on his own if you start this habit.
5. Make homemade games that emphasize the shape of letters.
If your child loves to play with cars, you can make letter shaped car tracks on the floor with masking or painter’s tape. Have them practice identifying the letter while they “drive” the car on the letter. At snack time, use your child’s favorite treat to form the letter in front of them, and help them identify the letter before they eat the snack. Pretzels or carrot sticks work well for this. These are often the types of unique games used at Jackson Preschool to teach ABCs.
6. Trace the letters in hands-on ways.
You can draw a large version of the letter on a piece of construction paper and have him use molding dough to form the letter shape. If she loves to get messy, put her in the bath and use shaving cream to write the letter on the wall. Have her trace the letter with her finger to emphasize the shape. Be creative, your child will stay more engaged if the activity is unique. Parents magazine has more ideas for alphabet activities at “12 Fun Alphabet Activities”.
7. Enroll them in a preschool program.
While there are many ways that parents can encourage learning in the home, having your child enrolled in a Jackson preschool program can give your child the structure that they need to learn the alphabet. With Jackson child care programs, your child will learn their alphabet and so much more in preparation for Kindergarten.
Children grow fast and many parents panic when their children are at the age where they should be able to identify their ABCs. Although most children should know their alphabet by the time they are ready to enroll in Kindergarten, many struggle with this skill. Hopefully, this list of alternative ways to teach the ABCs to your child will help them master the concept in no time.