Fun Kindergarten Readiness Activities to Try This Summer: Alphabet Knowledge
We recently shared five different Phonological Awareness activities to help prepare your Pre-K children for Kindergarten. But that’s just one important skill! Next up is Alphabet Knowledge. Don’t worry, we came prepared. Check out some more great activities to try with your kiddos:
Alphabet Knowledge Activities: “I’m a letter investigator!”
Alphabet knowledge focuses on recognizing and naming letters. When you practice alphabet knowledge, try to only focus on the letter and not the sound! Remember, this stage is all about laying a strong foundation for your children before Kindergarten. Phonics comes a bit later, so don’t feel like you need to try and tackle everything at once.
Before starting Kindergarten, children should be able to:
- Recognize upper and lowercase letters in the alphabet
- Name upper and lowercase letters in the alphabet (out of order)
- Match upper and lowercase letters (out of order)
These activities are fun and as easy as A.B.C! Check out some of our favorite alphabet knowledge activities to help prepare your children for Kindergarten.
1. Find the Letter in your name!
There’s no better place to start learning the alphabet then beginning with the letters in your name! Here is a fun and special activity for children to work on letter recognition. Place letters in a sensory bin or basket. Put the child’s name above the bin for their own reference. Have children search for their letters in the rice, beans, or sand. Once they find a letter in their name, have them place it on the matching letter on the written name tag. Don’t forget to start out this activity by modeling it in a large group setting and then coaching them with guided practice!
2. The Hungry Monster Returns
Remember our Hungry Monster we used for a Phonological Awareness activity? Well, he’s still pretty hungry. But this time, he’s craving something different: letters! Use that monster voice you perfected in our previous Hungry Monster activity and announce the letter he’s ready to devour. “I am so hungry! I want the letter T!” You can then guide your children by saying, “I’m looking for the letter ‘T’. This letter has one big line that goes down and a little line that goes across the top.” Once your students find the right letter, they get to feed it to the monster. Yummy! Check out this video to see the Hungry Monster in action.
3. Song: Where is…
Here’s another nursery rhyme you can use as a letter recognition activity. Sing this one to the tune of “Where is Thumbkin.” Before starting, give each child in the group a card with a letter printed on it. Make sure the print is nice and big so everybody can see it! Now, start singing your first letter: “Where is M? Where is M?” The child with that letter on their card should jump up and sing, “Here I am! Here I am!” Then the entire group sings, “This is letter M. This is letter M. Yes it is. Yes it is.”
4. Hot Letters
Have you ever played hot potato in your classroom? Let’s make it a letter naming activity! You can use either letter cards or 3D letters as the “hot potato.” Put on your favorite tune and have the children pass the letter from one person to the next. When the music stops, whoever is holding the letter holds it up for everyone to see and the entire group says the name of the letter together. Once the children feel more confident, they can each take turns announcing the letter as they are left holding the letter.
5. Go Fish!
Hook, line, and sinker! We’ve got a great letter recognition activity to try in small group time. Name a letter and your students have to fish for the correct letter. Encourage them and, if they need a bit of extra support trying to locate the correct letter, coach them through and describe what the letter looks like. For example, if they have a hard time locating the letter ‘E’ say, “this letter has a big straight line that goes down and three little lines that go across.” Check out this video to see this activity in action.
But wait, there’s MORE! We’ve already conquered Phonological Awareness and Alphabet Knowledge… what’s next? We’ll be back soon with five Emergent Writing activities to try this summer.