What is Alphabet Recognition?
One of the most vital skills needed for Kindergarten students is alpha- bet recognition. This means that students are able to recognize let- ters by sight. Children who can recognize letters quickly have an easier time learning about the sounds associated with letters. Working on letter names and letter sounds prior to entering Kinder- garten will allow for your child to have a “jump-start” in their education.
How can I help develop alphabet recognition at home?
There are many different ways to help your child learn the letter names and sounds at home. A few ideas are provided for your convenience.
- Make an Alphabet Caterpillar- write each letter of the alpha- bet on a paper circle (small pa- per plates work great). Mix the circles up and have your child put the letters in order on the floor to create a caterpillar. Add pipe cleaner antennae and legs for fun.
Alphabet Concentration-write all the letters of the alphabet on index cards (upper and lower- case). Flip them over on the ta- ble and have your child look for matches.
Hide-and-Seek-Hide letters throughout your house and have your child find them and read them.
- Squirt and Spell-Squirt shaving cream onto a cookie sheet and have your child write letters in the shaving cream.
- Letter Hop-With chalk, draw lilypads on the ground. Write letters in the middle of the lilypads. While you say a let- ter, have your child jump to the lilypad with the letter in it. Continue the game until your child has jumped on all the let- ters.
Letter Races-Write letters on index cards and place them upside down in a stack. Have your child go through and read the all the letters quickly while you time them. Keep track of the times and chal- lenge your child to beat their previous time.
BINGO-Make a 4x4 grid and put a different letter in each box. Call out letter names while your child tries to get 4 letters in a row.
What is phonemic awareness?
Phonemic awareness is the ability to manipulate spo- ken sounds in words. Pho- nemic awareness includes: rhyming, blending, substi- tuting sounds, segmenting sounds, identifying begin- ning, middle, and ending sounds, adding sounds, and deleting sounds. Phonemic awareness is the most powerful predictor of suc- cess in learning to read and spell. The development of phonemic awareness prepares children for the next phase of beginning reading.
How can I help develop phonemic awareness at home?
Read nursery rhymes to your child and talk about the rhyming words.
Ask your child to find objects that rhyme with a word you say.
Rhyme words with your child’s name.
- Play a listening game with your child. You can tell your child that you are going to say a word broken into parts and that you would like him/her to put the sounds together to make the word.
- Begin with simple one sylla- ble words and gradually increase if your child is ready. Make sure you pause between the sounds.
Example: /c/ /at/ Once your child is comfortable blending 2 sounds, they can
break down the word into smaller parts. Example: /c/ /a/ /t/
- Collect familiar objects around your house and place them in a brown paper bag. Next, have your child pull an object out of the bag and have them tell you the first or last sound of the object.
- Play “I SPY” with your child and have him/her find the object that starts or ends with the sound you have chosen.