Alphabet Activities and Skill Builders

07:18

Back to School Alphabet Activities for Centers

School has been in session for a few weeks for some and is gearing up to start for others.   In a previous post we looked at how we can set up activities to help students learn alphabet letters by using their names and the names of their peers.  We know that the more associations children can make with letters, the more likely it is that they will remember it.  
Now on to letters in general!
If you live in a state with 4K and preschool, you probably notice that many students come into kindergarten able to identify 10-15 letters. 
This is a great place to start at the beginning of kindergarten.  Letter identification is crucial prior to teaching children to read.  So all of my center bins and activities revolve around letters and letter identification for the first few months of kindergarten.  This blog post contains many of my favorites!

Build IT:
I am big into brain research.  As I stated above the more connections that students can make with letter the more likely they will remember them.  That is why I love alphabet building centers.  Students are not only looking at the letters, they are using their hands to shape them.  Alphabet building centers are great multi-sensory centers (think scented play dough as well:)  I love this Wikki Stix kit (affl).  Not only do they work on uppercase and lowercase letters at the same time, there is a picture with the beginning sound for children to also make sound association.



Back to School Alphabet Activities for Centers

Back to School Alphabet Activities for Centers

For those that do not have wikki stix handy, pipe cleaners and letter cards will do!

Back to School Alphabet Activities for Centers
Play dough is also a great substitute.
Back to School Alphabet Activities for Centers

My students loved building the letters with these cute alphabet printables.  You can now find small circle stickers at the Dollar Tree!


Wikki Stix, stickers, playdough, pipe cleaners, straws, toothpicks and blocks are all fun materials to build letters with!

Games and Puzzles:
Games and puzzles are also a fun way to teach alphabet letters.  One of my favorites is Candyland.  Every child loves this game and they can easily be found at goodwill.  I write the uppercase or lowercase letters on the board.  Each child has a recording sheet of paper.  Students write down each letter that they land on.  If they know the letter they circle it.  At the end of the center, they share with the class the letters they landed on (writing letters adds another element as well).

Back to School Alphabet Activities for Centers

Alphabet Train by Melissa and Doug is a classic.  Students can use the box to find the letters and place them in order-they love singing the ABC's after they complete it!  This can also become a fun matching game.  After they build the train my kids love to add our alphabet animals (fisher price) to the train.
Back to School Alphabet Activities for Centers


Are you looking for fun alphabet activities that feel more like a craft and less like a worksheet?  Check out Alphabet Printables.
A great lowercase letter game is ABC Cookies by Learning Resources (affl).  This activity is like ten games in one.  Are you always looking for something for assistance and parent helpers to use with students-this game is perfect.
Back to School Alphabet Activities for Centers
 Have children search through colorful rice for alphabet beads and sort the beads into letter cases (bead or tackle boxes with letter stickers in each compartment).
Are you looking for fun alphabet activities that feel more like a craft and less like a worksheet?  Check out Alphabet Printables.
Children can search through water beads for magnetic letters.
Kids love games-and if you can make those beloved games more academic, the more likely students are to fully engage in them.  For example-we have all seen the game twister used for academic purposes and card games like go fish...be creative, you can't lose with games!

Arts and Crafts
Most kids love art.  Unfortunately art is not as common in kindergarten as it should be.  Many teachers feel pressure to keep things more academic and find messy painting activities distracting for the kids.  However, what administrator is going to complain when they enter a classroom and see kids completely engaged with letters while crafting?
Back to School Alphabet Activities for Centers


Look at what I found at the Dollar Tree!  This will save you hours of cutting out squares! 
Are you looking for fun alphabet activities that feel more like a craft and less like a worksheet?  Check out Alphabet Printables.


Back to School Alphabet Activities for Centers

Back to School Alphabet Activities for Centers


Back to School Alphabet Activities for Centers

Are you looking for fun alphabet activities that feel more like a craft and less like a worksheet?  Check out Alphabet Printables.
Painting, dabbing, punching stamping and beading are fun activities to use.  I usually prefer to work with letters a whole-like looking through a book and adding matching beads.  However, as you know there are always 5-8 letters that a majority of the students struggle with, like G, Y, L etc.  Those are great letters to spend extra time with!

Writing Letters:
There are so many fun ways to work on writing letters with students.  Try to have them write using their fingers first with activities like writing letters in sand, shaving cream and finger paint.  Then, move on to writing with crayons, markers and pencils.  I love to mix up the art mediums to keep it fresh and exciting.  Have students use expo markers to write letters on white boards.  You can have them use window markers to write on the windows.  An occupational therapist would love it if you have children practice writing letters with chalk on a chalkboard of some sort! You can also work on specific letters using a rainbow writing center like the one shown below.

Are you looking for fun alphabet activities that feel more like a craft and less like a worksheet?  Check out Alphabet Printables.
Variety is the key!  The bigger the variety and the higher the quality the greater the gain!  

As a side note, make sure to incorporate the alphabet into your beginning of the year routine.  Place your alphabet posters near your morning meeting area and have the star of the week point to each letter using different alphabet songs (check out youtube for a variety).  You could also have students say the alphabet using different voices like a giant or a mouse.  
Hand students pointers and have them find the matching letter...I could go on and on!  I hope you have found at least one activity that will help you in your classroom or homeschool:)

If you liked the printable activities above you will love this freebie! Click here to check it out!










by Katie Ellingson~Kindergarten Rocks

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