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Home > Home and Family > Ideas to help your child learn the alphabet

Ideas to help your child learn the alphabet

1) Most kids learn the alphabet song first, well before they are able to associate the name of a letter with what it looks like. Ways to help your child learn it are various kids shows like Sesame Street, learning toys like the Fisher Price 'I love my puppy', play laptops and of course singing it to them yourself. Pointing to each of the letters while you sing it helps too.

2) Many people first teach their kids the letters in their name. These or other letters that are of greater interest to them are a good starting point. Having their name written on things like books, on their room door or on their wall can help.

3) Start with the capital/uppercase letters, they tend to be easier to learn.

4) Talk to them about the shapes of the letters and how some of them are similar. For example, how a C is like an O with part of it missing - or a bite taken out of it!

5) Point out letters to them on things in and outside of your home - street signs, doors, etc.

6) Buy an alphabet poster and put it someplace where they will see it all the time. Or make your own!

7) Some of the Leap Frog DVD's may be helpful for teaching your kids the alphabet such as 'Letter Factory' or the new 'Alphabet Amusement Park'.

8) The LeapFrog Fridge phonics is a great learning toy to have - it can teach letters and their sounds and also plays the alphabet song.

9) Get a set of foam letters for the bathtub.

10) There are many books available that you can use to help teach the alphabet - ones with Elmo or Dora or some other character your child likes may make it more fun and hold their interest longer.

11) Buy some magnetic letters for the refrigerator. Look around - many types of sets are available, some with larger or smaller sized letters, some with the vowels a different color than the consonants, etc.

12) If they are old enough, encourage your child to trace the letters on paper with dashed or dotted lines. Or get the dry erase kind that you can reuse.

13) Associating the sound a letter makes with the letter is really part of phonics, but many people also consider it to be part of learning the alphabet. To help your child start to learn the sounds the letters make you can do things like show them a letter, make the sound it makes and give them examples of words that begin with that letter, exaggerating the sound a bit.

For more information please take a look at some of my other articles about reading:

Help your child become a good reader - and enjoy reading!

How to best read to your child

Help develop your child's pre-reading skills

Ideas for books that offer interactive features and engage other senses

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