"Learning letters" tracing games for kids
Materials: scissors, cardboard, construction paper, crayons, markers, glue gun or any other glue; either one or more materials from the following: shoelaces, strings, straws, woolen threads.
- In order to start playing "Learning letters" tracing games with your child, first of all, you need to make tracing letters for kids. Take cardboard or thicker construction paper and cut it in square shapes. Then draw or trace alphabet letters on them. Don’t forget to use lowercase alphabet letters only.
- For those who want to cheat a bit, you can just print out free printable alphabet letters.
- Cut printable alphabet letters out and glue them on top of the alphabet flashcards.
- We need to trace our letters and add some texture to them. To add the texture you need to choose from the following list: shoelaces, strings, straws, woolen threads. All of these materials provide different sensory experience and are easy to find and use. Glue them on top of the letters with a glue gun. Once your letter card is dry trace the textured alphabet letter with your finger - you should be able to tell what the letter is just by touching it.
- Now you need to make every alphabet card textured – it will be time-consuming but so worth it, as you are creating amazing tracing, vocabulary and teaching reading material.
- Tracing letters games and activities are important (if not to say the most important) part in a process of how to teach a child to read. Take sensory alphabet cards that you have just created, and by using your three fingers grip, trace it 3 times and repeat the name of the sound. It is like holding an imaginary pen, where the tips of your finger are your ink. Ask your child to do the same for you. It is important to involve visual (to see) and physical (to touch) senses in children’s reading activities.
- Start tracing with the first letters in the alphabet but eventually cover the entire alphabet. Be careful to use only word sounds. This will help your child to identify these sounds when he/she is seeing them in the book. This way when he/she sees a word “cat” they will know it consists of the sounds “c” “a” “t” not letter names “c” “ai” “tee”.
- When you finish tracing letters start a discussion about them. Ask your child questions. For example – I know a word that starts with a sound “b” – a “book”. Ask your child – “What word that starts with sound “b” do you know”?
Tracing games can vary based on materials you are tracing on. Try another version of “Learning letters” tracing game using traceable letters. Children who enjoy drawing and arts will prefer it.
“Learning letters” tracing game with traceable letters
Materials: glue, a duct tape (wide), cardboard, a construction paper, a paper knife; use a paper, a pen, a pencil, charcoal, crayons, non-toxic washable dot markers for tracing.
- Make even pieces of cardboard. Draw alphabet letters on them or use printable alphabet letters as we did in a previous alphabet tracing game.
- Place a duct tape to cover the whole area of the cardboard.
- With a paper knife cut out alphabet letters leaving holes in the shape of letters.
- Offer your child to take part in various traceable letter activities. If you want to teach your child to write use broken crayons for tracing. Use small broken crayons to develop your child’s writing grip. Crayons should be too short for grabbing, so he/she will need to use his/her three fingers – a thumb, an index finger and a third finger to hold them.
- Ask your child to trace letters to create separate words. If your child looks puzzled you should give him/her a hint. For instance, you can say – “Let’s trace the word dog, what is the first letter sound in it? If your child says “d” then offer him/her to trace it and proceed to the next letter sound. When the word is finished ask your child about his choice of colors and materials. Discussions promote a child’s cognitive development and critical thinking skills.
- You can use your alphabet tracing letters as many times as you want. Washable dot markers your child will be using can be easily washed out with a soft wet cloth.
Tracing games and activities can be conducted outside in fresh air as well. Everybody loves going to the beach with kids and just hanging out. That’s definitely fun. But try to add a bit of learning to your fun.
Write some letters or words on the sand and ask your child to trace them. Ask him/her to write their own words too. That sounds interesting! Use of natural materials is a very powerful tool for children’s early childhood development as it provides a vital sensory experience that is essential in the process of early childhood learning. Don’t hesitate to trace on the snow as well. Your child can use their fingers or little sticks and have lots of fun with it!
Tracing activities are great for learning alphabet letters, learning to write, recognizing symbols and promoting motor development in children.