Creating a letter board alphabet activity for preschoolers and kindergarteners is quick and easy. This literacy activity focuses on sorting letters by their shape and make up. Give your child time to sit up close and consider letters in this easy alphabet activity.
I love that letter boards today are the chalkboards of yesterday.
So many homes have them (especially thanks to those FabFitFun boxes that were so popular) and oh my goodness, aren’t they so much fun?! Which is why using them for a letter board alphabet activity for preschoolers seems 100% right.
Full credit for the idea to use a letter board in a kids activity to my dear friend Katie at Preschool Inspirations.
Since my letter board came with about a million tiny letters it seemed like the perfect sorting activity for my preschooler.
Who doesn’t love a chance for a preschooler to work on letter recognition AND sorting skills all at once – oh and with a side dish pre-writing skills?!
I’m not kidding when I say this activity is fantastic:
- Sorting – classifying letters by shape
- Letter recognition – learning to name letters
- Pre-writing skills – noticing how letters are formed
RELATED: Need more activities for preschoolers?! I have the best list of them!
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How can you help preschoolers learn letters?
Expose them to letters.
Immerse them in letters.
Make letters a normal part of life and think of the alphabet the same way you thought of animal names and sounds.
You didn’t flashcard kids to learn what a cow looks like and how it says “moo.” Instead, when you saw a cow, you said “moo”.
Take the same approach with letters:
- Introduce them in context
- Don’t over-stress them
- Keep it light and fun
RELATED: Worried about your kiddo and the ABCs? Read my thoughts on preschoolers learning the alphabet.
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How to set-up a letter board alphabet activity
All I did to set up this activity was to take a piece of painter’s tape and use it to make a center line down my letter board.
I set out my letters on the floor and gave my daughter (4) the directions for our activity.
Sort the letters by straights and curves.
Immediately she shouted “K is all straights!!!” and then a moment later “G is NOT!”
She knew right away exactly how to sort these letters – but even then, she wasn’t always perfect and it took her time to do this activity.
A lot of time and a lot of focus.
The learning goals
Remember: we don’t need to justify an activity with “learning” to make it a valid and valuable experience for the child.
But in this case- it’s pretty obvious what a child is “getting” from the letter board alphabet activity.
Exposure to letters.
In this activity, children take a closer look at letters. They take a deeper look at the formation of the letter – and see the letter beyond just “this is M or this is O.”
Tip – Knowing letter names isn’t a requirement for the activity
The child does not need to know the names of all the letters in the alphabet to do this activity.
Because this isn’t a letter naming activity: this activity is about the shape of a symbol. At no point is the child asked to name the symbol. Instead, we are asking them to look critically at the symbol and determine if there are straight lines or curvy lines.
If the child doesn’t know all the letter names yet, this gives them incredible exposure to each individual letter – which is pretty cool.
RELATED: Thinking your preschooler might be ready to learn to read? Read more about reading education with preschoolers.
Frequently Asked Questions
Kids in the United States learn the alphabet on a broad spectrum between ages 2 and 6 years old (end of Kindergarten). This is a big age range and your child will fall naturally somewhere in this spacing. Other countries do not begin teaching letter names until age 7+.
Think stages not ages. Instead of considering an age, let’s look at the child: does your child have an interest in letters? Do they understand how to sort? Do they know the difference between a straight line and a curvy line?
Don’t miss my list of alphabet activities for kids – it’s full of great activities.