You hear your little one singing the ABC’s in the backseat of the car and you smile – they’ve finally mastered it! Now what? Where do you go from here? One of the first recommended spelling skills on many preschool checklists is for your child to spell his or her own name. Here are 5 fun ways to them!
1. Bath Letters
Children often learn best when they receive hands on, sensory stimulation through an activity. The bath is a great time to do this! Instead of throwing the whole set of bath letters in, just put in the letters in your child’s name. This will make it easier for them to single out the ones in their own name. Then, have some fun! Start by holding each letter by your face and naming it. This will help ensure your child is paying attention as you teach him or her. Then, ask your child to stick the letter on the wall! Other fun ways to use these – fish for them, hide them under rubber duckies or other animals.
2. Finger Paint
Roll out a big piece of white paper and write your child’s name on it and large print. Then, give him or her some colorful finger paint and ask your child to trace each letter as you name it! This activity is hands on, messy, and engaging for little ones!
3. Sidewalk chalk
This one will get your child moving AND learning! Draw the letters of his or her name in sidewalk chalk, spaced out in your driveway. Or, draw them in the squares of hopscotch instead of writing numbers! Have your little one jump from one letter to the next, naming them together with you! Say each sound clearly and slowly to help your child learn the proper way to articulate each sound and the order of letters for spelling his or her name.
4. Backyard Scavenger Hunt
Cut out the letters of your child’s name from cardboard. Then, hide them around the backyard. The object is for your child to collect each letter as quickly as they can. Then return them to you. After that, you can help rearrange the letter to the correct order for spelling his or her name. Encourage your child to say the letters with you a few times, as you point to the letter to teach the correspondence. Repetition can help improve your child’s memory for how to spell their name!
5. Make Play-Doh Letters
This one is so fun for kids! Draw each letter in your child’s name largely on a separate piece of paper. You can also put each paper in a page protector or laminate. Next, help him or her roll out some Play-Doh and cover the “Play-Doh mats” (letters). More tactile stimulation like this means your child is likely to pay close attention as you name the letters together to complete the activity.