Tuesday, March 1, 2011

My Top-10 ABC Materials to Have on Hand


 As many of you know, I get to post what we do for Letter of the Week over on Totally Tots. I love coming up with creative ways to teach the alphabet using themes. If I had to do everything from scratch though, I would burn out. I do have an ABC arsenal at home that helps me stay on track and keep things easy. Here’s my top-10 list of abc materials for Letter of the Week (in no particular order):

1. Foam alphabet letters. These are great for tactile learning and play. They can be sorted, hid, traced, painted, sequenced and more. For more ideas check out Julie's posts on Little-Hands on ABC & 123's over at Totally Tots.

Using craft foam as sorting mats

2. Felt pieces or craft foam. I use these all the time as sorting mats. 

3. Magnet letters. I use these to switch things up. We use them on our fridge or magnetic dry-erase board. They are used for sorting, practicing beginning sounds etc. Sometimes changing where the learning takes place helps keep my kids' attention.

4. Laminated alphabet flashcards or ABC mats. I purchased a set from Kumon and it has the direction arrows for learning how to write. Since they are laminated, we can write on them and use them with Playdough. I also hang the letter we are learning on our morning board.

5. Basic Alphabet books. Lots and lots of books! Not all of ours are ABC books, but are also ones we have used/are using for our Letter of the Week themes.

6. Alphabet puzzles: We have several different ABC puzzles on hand. Of course we use them as intended, but I also use the pieces for sorting, in our ABC letter box, for games and more.

7. Playdough Just an all-around great material to have on hand. We use them with printable playdough mats, with abc cookie cutters and for pretend play.

8.  ABC wooden blocks I will admit that I was surprised at how much my girls like playing with something as simple as wooden blocks. Besides building, we use them in games (knock down the tower that has the letter A etc.), for sorting, and building some words.

9.  Dry-erase crayons I like that dry erase crayons don't smell like dry-erase markers. Since they are crayons, they are also a little easier for my girls to control when using on laminated surfaces.

10. Leapfrog ABC Fridge Magnetic Set We use the letters for sorting, games, and as reinforcement of the letter sounds.

What things/products/materials do you find are must-have's when teaching the alphabet?

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Blogger Katie's Nesting Spot said...

Great round up and spot on I agree wholeheartedly with your picks:)

March 1, 2011 at 10:18 PM  
Blogger Jackie H. said...

That's a great list! I never thought to use felt squares or foam squares for sorting. Actually I'm always at a loss on what to use for sorting so this is great!!!

March 4, 2011 at 3:10 PM  
Blogger Angie @ Many Little Blessings said...

Fabulous ideas! Love them all! Thanks so much for sharing them.

I shared this post on the Homeschool Classroom's Facebook page. :)

March 8, 2011 at 4:13 PM  

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