Category: Alphabet

Home / Alphabet / Household Supplies /

How to Practice the Alphabet with a Computer Keyboard

We have a USB keyboard that we occasionally use. When it’s not hooked up to the computer, my kids love playing with it! I’ve learned it’s a fabulous way for them to practice the alphabet.

Here are a few activities we use it for:

Type the ABCs in Order

I ask my kids to hunt and peck the alphabet, in order. This forces them to look at all the letters, and use their ability to recognize a letter by shape.

As they search for each letter, I ask them to sing the ABC song, slowly. So they sing “A” as they hit the A key, and “B” as they hit the B key, and so on.

Once they hit Z, I ask them to do it again, a bit faster.

They keep practicing the alphabet until they can find each letter in the amount of time it takes to sing the ABC song normally.

Name the Letters in QWERTY Order

Using the non-alphabetical order on the keyboard is a great activity for ensuring your child knows each letter. I just have my child start at Q, and name all the letters in the top row.

Then we move to the A and do all those letters.

We finish with the last row, starting with Z.

Letter Sounds

When we work on letter sounds, I can point to a letter and ask my child to say the sound. She’ll say the sound, and then type the letter.

We’ll typically do 10-15 letter in a single setting.

Any that my child can’t automatically name, I know I need to continue working on that letter with her. It’s an easy way for me to assess progress in a way my child thinks is a game! 😀

Spell Your Name

My kids love trying to spell their name on the keyboard. So, I’ll ask them to find all the letters in their name. And in my name. And spell Dad. With 10 people in our family, there’s always a name to practice!

Play Store

We love to bring the keyboard out when we’re playing store. The cashier sits and pretends to type out several things:

  • The names of customers
  • Items in the store for sale
  • The name of the store
  • Prices on items

Even if they’re using invented spelling, it’s a fun way to practice the alphabet and letter sounds.

Do Your Kids Enjoy Using a Keyboard?

If you have an extra (or broken) keyboard lying around, try letting your kids practice the alphabet with it. It’s a favorite activity here (along with the old-fashioned typewriter!)

Of course you’ll want to make sure there aren’t any keys popping off, as that could be a choking hazard.

If you give it a try, come back and let me know what your kids thought!

 

Help your little learners practice the alphabet with a computer keyboard.

Save

ABC Pancakes & Easy Letter Identification Games

My young kids love playing with ABC pancakes. Now don’t worry–I’m not letting them get all sticky with syrup and butter by playing with real pancakes.

Nope.

They’re using pancakes I whipped up on the computer. I made a basic template by copying and pasting a circle over and over again in Word.

When I printed it, I made sure to print enough copies that I ended up with 26 circles. I actually got 30 copies since there were six pancakes on each side, but they had fun writing their names on the extras.

How to Make ABC Pancakes

Once you print the pancake templates, let your kid cut them out. They don’t have to be perfect (the real pancakes I make rarely are either), and it’s a great way to practice fine motor skills.

Then, give your child a marker. He’s going to write a mommy letter on one side of each pancake, A-Z. On the back of each pancake, write the same baby letter. So one pancake will have A on one side, and a on the other. Another will have Y on one side, and y on the other.

Once the pancakes are lettered, have your child color them. My kids decided to use brown so they looked like actual pancakes, but there’s no reason your child has to. Let them use their imagination if desired! Just be sure you can actually read the letters when they’re finished.

When the pancakes are ready, have your kids pick up the scraps. Now they’re ready to play! You’ll need the pancakes they just prepared, and a spatula.

Scramble the cards, and lay them out on the table. Here are three different games to play, that’ll help with letter identification:

ABC Order Stack

Have your child use the spatula to lift up the letter A and place it in a nearby spot. Next, they need to lift the letter B and stack it on top of the A. Continue until there’s a stack of 26 pancakes in ABC order.

Flip Over

Pancakes need to flip! Have your little one say the name of a letter, and flip it over to reveal the mama or baby of the same letter. Kids need repetition to help them remember, so making it fun helps!

Order Up!

Let your child try her hand at being a short order chef. Go up to the table and “order” a stack of pancakes with three different letters. You might say:

I’d like a stack with Y, W, and B today please.

Let your child stack up your order and read the letters back to you.

Take turns being chef and customer. You can always use fewer or more pancakes to keep the game at an appropriate level!

Want some pancakes of your own?

Here’s the template I whipped up. It’s super simple, because if you’re looking for fancy you’re at the wrong blog.

ABC Pancake Template

If you print it out and play, I’d love to hear how it goes in the comments section below!

Photo credit: Elli O via Unsplash

5 Simple ABC Games with homemade letter cards. A video post!

5 Simple ABC Games with Homemade Letter Cards

We love playing learning games! Today I have a special treat for you. My six-year old daughter, Ellie helped me create my very first video post.

She demonstrates five simple ABC games that use our homemade letter cards. Click below to see the video.

In case you have a lousy internet connection (like I do…), or don’t have time to watch the video, here’s a written version. It has all the directions you need to play these simple ABC games.

5 Simple ABC Games with Homemade Letter Cards

How to Make Homemade Letter Cards

Our letter cards are simple. They’re inexpensive, and fairly durable. You’ll need:

26 Index Cards

1 marker (like a Sharpie)

To make the cards, just write one large letter on the unlined side of each card.

Game 1: Alphabet Soup

You’ll need:

Your letter cards

A large soup pot

A spoon

To Play:

Spread the letter cards around the room. Have your child run over and grab one, and say what letter it is.

Ask your child to add the letter to the pot.

Continue adding letters until they’re all in.

Then sing the ABC song and give the letters a stir!

2. ABC Toss

You’ll Need:

Your letter cards

A ball of crumpled aluminum foil

To Play:

Spread a few letters out on a desk or table. Hand your child the ball of foil, and have her take a few steps backwards.

Your child tosses the ball of aluminum foil onto the cards. Ask her what letter the foil landed on (or landed near).

Flip that card over, and toss the ball again. Continue until all cards are flipped over.

3. A Basket Full of Letters

You’ll Need:

Your letter cards

A basket

A chair

To Play:
Set the basket on the chair. Hand your child the stack of letter cards, and ask her to stand a few feet back.

Ask your child what card is on top. Once she says the letter, have her toss it into the basket.

When all the cards are tossed, have your child pick up any misses. They can take a step closer, and try again.

4. Flip the Sound

You’ll Need:

Your letter cards

To Play:

Shuffle the letter cards and place them in a stack face down.

Have your child flip the top card over.

Ask your child to say the name of the letter, and the sound the letter makes. Have your child say a word that starts with that sound.

Continue for each letter.

5. Driving for Letters

You’ll Need:

Your letter cards

A toy vehicle

To Play:

Set the letter cards in order on the floor in a path around the room. They should be face up.

Have your child start with the vehicle at the letter A. Ask her to either put the letters in the vehicle (if it’s big enough) or drive over the letter.

She should sing the ABC song, driving from one letter to the next.

Will you give any of these simple ABC games a try? I’d love to hear about it in the comments!

Photo by Amador Loureiro via Unsplash