I have had a lot of people ask me about what I do during the day with daughters in regards to education. If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you will periodically see me post about the learning time activities I do with my girls. A child’s education begins at home and parents or guardians should be their child’s first teacher, regardless if the child will be homeschooled or will attend a traditional school.
Preschool at home should be (and in reality is) simple and inexpensive. I will be sharing a series of posts related to preschool at home, hopefully encouraging you to create memorable educational moments for your preschooler, for pennies. Preschool at home should begin with the basics–the alphabet.
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How do you teach the ABC’s?
First things first; teach your child the ABC song–and early! I know, it sounds silly for me to suggest such a thing, but there are children who, unfortunately, get to kindergarten and don’t even know the tune of the ABCs. I have a family member who is a principal of a grade school. She shared with me that she once asked one of her five year old kindergarten students to sing the ABC’s and the child not only did not know her ABC’s, but did not know the tune of the traditional ABC song. Heartbreaking, right? Sing the song all through the day and your little one will catch on quickly!
I purchased ABC flashcards from my local Target for $1 when my oldest daughter was about eight or nine months old. Each week I would introduce about five letters and flashcards by lying the cards on the floor and repeatedly saying the name of the letter. I would then, mix them up and ask my daughter to give me a specific letter. Once I felt she memorized that group of letters, we moved on to the next set of five letters. It was a simple and inexpensive way to get my daughter to recognize letters.
Most of the educational worksheets I use are from Educents. I love using Educents because the majority of the products have been created by other parents and homeschoolers. A lot of the worksheets I have downloaded and printed from the site have been free, which is a another plus!
I also enjoy creating my own worksheets to help my daughters learn. For example, when teaching the ABCs, I would write a list of ten words that begin or include the letter(s) of the week and have my child point out and circle the appropriate letter. Other times I would write the capital letters on one column and the lowercase letters in a column beside it, with a goal of my children appropriately pairing the capital and lowercase letters.
We watched and listened to several kid-friendly YouTube videos to help facilitate letter recognition and letter sounds. Although we watched a ton of beneficial videos, our favorites were from ABCMouse. The contemporary videos allowed us to learn with music–which is one of our favorite ways to learn.
Repetition is Key
If you want a child to learn something, you will most likely need to teach them again and again. Repetition of letters is key to getting to preschoolers to understand the alphabet. So even after you have made it through all 26 six letters, come up with creative ways to review them. When you’re grocery shopping, ask your little one to find something that starts with a particular letter. Have them point out the letters on packages of food or signs in the store. Take every opportunity possible to reiterate topics like the ABC’s to your children.
What are your favorite resources to use to teach your children? What has helped you teach your little one their ABCs?