Learning to read and write
These fun activities for children aged 2-5 years will help develop fine motor skills needed for writing letter shapes and encourage your child to visually recognise and physically make letters with different materials.
- Find and old single stocking, scrunch up newspaper and stuff the paper balls into the stocking until it is filled. Tie it off and draw two eyes and a mouth on one end of it with a thick marker. Now you have a Mr Snake. Make letters using Mr Snake's body, such as an 'S' for snake, 'M' for Mummy, 'W' for web and 'O' for octopus. Make more snakes and form letter shapes with them, then trace over them with your hand.
- A magnetic sketch board is fun to draw and write on, and easily transportable. Use it at home, in the car or take it anywhere you go.
- Make letter shapes out of cooked spaghetti, spell your child's name, then eat it!
- Make letters out of play-dough.
- Bake cookies together using your favourite shapes and letters with the dough. Look for letters on the food pacakging.
- Make letter shapes out of woll, rope or pipe cleaners and glue them onto paper or cardboard. Sound out the letters.
- Make a long snake out of a pack of cards by joining the ends of each card together. Make different letter shapes (Lego, dominoes and blocks can also be used).
- Construct alphabet letters out of drinking straws, then glue them on paper.
- Go for a bush walk and collect small sticks, leaves and rocks. Then make alphaet letters with them and glue them onto cardboard. You can also use shells from the beach.
- Cut out all the letters of your child's name from newspapers and magazines and glue htem onto a piece of paper. Then trace over them with a coloured crayon.
- Trace over titles and headings in newspapers and magazines with a thick marker.
- When you're at the beach or sandpit draw alphabet letters and shapes in the sand with a stick.
Source: Up Downs by Michelle M Neumann, published by Finch.