Monday, September 22, 2014

10 Ideas for Teaching Letter Recognition

To help young children develop writing and reading skills, it is important that they first learn letter recognition. 

Research shows that children who can recognize letters of the alphabet will help them connect the letters and the sounds they stand for. To help improve letter recognition, constant exposure and practice with writing letters are necessary.

I first introduced the alphabet to my son by exposing him to books and flashcards even before he turned a year old.  I also religiously read to him everyday and supplemented our reading with educational videos and audio CDs. At a year and a half, he was already reciting the alphabet and their respective sounds. All these helped broaden his vocabulary and assisted him in articulating words clearly.  

Now that Caleb just turned three years old, I'm starting to teach him how to read and write. Part of his home school program is letter recognition. Although the program recommends different activities to help him develop this skill, I still think  and research other creative ways on how can learn.  The internet is also a good resource for a lot of fun activities for young children to learn and enjoy. 

Here are some ideas that you can do to help your children develop his letter recognition skills:

1.  Provide different materials for your kids to learn about letters.  Keep flashcards handy and organized by filing them in single ring binders

2.  Download android apps for letter recognition and phonemic awareness.  I personally like the alphabet app Although this one comes for a minimal fee, there are other apps that you can also download for free.

3. Form letters using clay/ Play dough and plastic straws

4.  Use available toys and materials at home - blocks, shape sorters, marbles, etc to trace and form letters.

5. Incorporate learning letters and playing with your kid's favorite toys

"B" is for Bulldozer

6.  Trace letters with cut-out shapes or by finger painting to help develop motor skills, an important skill for writing

7.  Use different materials with different textures in forming/ tracing letters to improve sensory skills 

8.  Practice connecting capital and small letters

9.  Play alphabet match 

Fill clear plastic jar with rice grains and small magnetic letters. Seal with clear packaging tape to secure contents. Shake the bottle and match letters that appear by placing stones on your alphabet chart

10.  Paint letter using Q-tip to strengthen fingers and develop fine motor skills

I hope you found the ideas useful. If you have other ideas/ activities for pre-schoolers, please feel free to share them.


  1. We used flashcard din then magnetic letters. Sign language also helped my baby since he was amazed by the sign of each letter. There are free apps for letters and even phonics that we used though we have limited ipad/ screen time.

  2. Awesome tips and will apply these to my youngest. :)

  3. These are great tips! :) I'll try these with my son too :)

  4. Thank you for the tips mommy. Hope this will work for my 3 yr old son :D

  5. great tips, mommy! i am planning of getting an alphabet set to start my son off with his letters as i am seeing this as an option to start developing his speech... :D

  6. Visual Aids are very effective especially the colorful ones. But in my busiest time, I just play their Jollibee CD, the version that teaches "recognizing Alphabet" and it' was very effective.

  7. Great technique! Unlike my two older boys, my youngest is extremely kinesthetic which is why he's so hard to manage, haha. When his two brothers are seated doing lessons, he's hanging on something with his legs(upside down), getting into cabinets and messing up the clothes. I've been wondering how on earth I'm going to teach him - this is an awesome way to introduce him to letters.

    I also started early with my eldest, he was reading by 4 years old, his younger brother, on the other hand, learned to read on his own. (In fact, he taught himself to count and to recognize shapes too) Nagulat na lang kami that he was already reading signages in BGC when we were walking! So now, I'm just helping him polish it and correct some areas.
    Children do have a natural learning ability, he's living proof of that.

    The youngest....hehehe.....I can't even finish books with him. But he likes the board books. :)

  8. Great tips! I agree that it's very important to teach letter recognition. We tend to use books for that purpose. I was never into flash cards, though, but my 2yo learned his letters through our wooden puzzles. :-)

  9. These are great tips, mommy! We also homeschool our 3 year old. Our son is an auditory learner so he prefers to learn using CDs and videos. He also loves :)

  10. Good Job Mommy! Thanks for the ideas, I think I need to start teaching my 8 month old daughter in Alphabet. More on nursery rhymes kasi yung pinapanood nya. I try to download the and also will buy books/flash cards at BookSale. ^_^

  11. These are great ideas! I need to develop my boy's fine motor skills as his fingers are "soft" and he doesn't want to write on his own yet. But he does recognize the alphabet, even the phonics.

  12. Brilliant tips mommy! I think i did all of these except for the clay and straw. I will do that the enxt time I have a baby...

  13. I remember when I was little, I never learned the ABAKADA or the letters because my mother thought me how to read directly from a college Rizal book. How I ever managed, I dunno. But there are times when I was small that I feel like I just need to study and play is the enemy. I want things to be different with my daughter. I want her to enjoy learning. And your tips are great. Must bookmark this. :)