Thursday, August 29, 2013

Fun Ways to Teach the Alphabet


Previously, the teacher highlighted to me that 3.5 years old Kyle did not know alphabet and was not able to recognise the words. I blogged about it and felt very thankful for the many friends and parents whom shared readily, with me tips and tricks from teaching him the alphabet, to phonics, to writing. There are also very helpful websites that shares tips on teaching, one of my favorite had to be MyPlaySchool.net

So, I spent the June School Holidays to help Kyle in these areas, and I am really proud (and delighted) to say he can now recognised the 26 alphabet, big or small caps! Not just recognising them, he knows the phonics sound of each and every alphabet too! All thanks to mommies around me and the effort my sister and I put in. He is very fortunate to have my sister as his godmother and I really appreciate her love for my children. No learning disabilities! Only a lazy mama with wrong techniques! 

One important thing to note when teaching preschooler is:
We shouldn't resort to forcing (and screaming and scolding) the child to learn at all. Instead of making the child learn, we will made the child hate to learn.  Instead, we should focus on making the child interested to learn and hope that this interest will stay in the child for life. 

Long before, I did use my own methods to teach Kyle his alphabets, but I feel I had been doing the wrong way. I thought painting alphabet is interesting enough but they were simply not interesting enough, especially for boys. I need to be even more interesting in order to engage him. Last time he couldn't sit down more than 15 minutes with me,  now he still can't. I also learnt that to help the child learnt, I will need to do many different activities to create a variety of learning methods and many different learning opportunities for him. 

So, what magic did the works on Kyle? I am more than happy to share the tricks that works on him with fellow mommies. Time to pay it forward. :) 



1)  Munchkin Floating Foam Letters - Bath Time Alphabet Foam 

This is an awesome invention! I had been pointing to the alphabets everywhere but failed to gain Kyle's attention but this caught his attention fully! We had really good bonding session during bath time everyday and he will request me for bringing his alphabets in with him! I no longer have to beg him to sit down to learn with me. Alphabet learning has become fun when it's mixed with water play. 




2) Draw Alphabet Pictures 

 
Lol! I started with with Rote Writing with Kyle, but i realised this is a really bad method. Which children will love to repeat writing meaningless stuffs? Both me and Kyle ended up really stressed (me scolding him to continue while he is sobbing away! lol) So i made a twist to traditional alphabet writing and we design and drew together, to mix and alphabet itself and what it stands for. 




3) Leap Frog Letter Factory DVD

Many mommies told me they only used this and their child learn the ABCs on his own. I was a little skeptical at first because I was quite against watching too much Television. But then again, hubby had help raised an iPad addict, so what's with television right? This is TOTALLY good for days and times when i am busy with the little brother Kyne. I can leave Big Brother with this cartoon running and he is mesmerised. This is what taught Kyle his phonics cos i didn't learn Phonics in school last time. I know nuts about it!  



4) Leap Frog Letter Factory Phonics Play set

Upon seeing that the Letter Factory DVD works, i quickly bought a set of the Leap Frog Letter Factory Phonics toy for Kyle. He is thrilled to received yet another nicely wrapped up present from his parents. This toy helps to reinforces the letter names, letter sounds and ABC songs. It's also good to have an extension from the cartoon he watches and have something to touch and play with. It not big and we can carry it with us when we goes back to grandparents' for stayovers. 





5) Wall Charts

To be honest, I never believe this works because when Kyle was much younger, i had stick up some stuffs on the walls which he tore it all. At the advice of a friend, i bought and stick up some alphabet wall charts to help reinforce, hoping that he will go and see once in awhile. To my astonishment, he will call out to me once in awhile "Mommy! Come! We learn the alphabets together" He can point and tell me all the alphabets and what it stands for. If i made the phonics sound, he can also tell me which alphabet makes that sound! 



6) Melissa and Doug Alphabet Sounds Puzzle 

I participated in a giveaway held by Mama Shoppe and won myself the Melissa and Doug Sounds Puzzle (I won not one, but two sets! One set is the Alphabet Sounds Puzzle and another is the Numbers Puzzle!) This creates another dimension of fun for Kyle to be able to fix the puzzle, when he fit in the alphabet correctly, the puzzle pronounce the name of the letter! The colorful pictures underneath each alphabet also reinforces the relationship between the letter and what it stands for.  



7) Reading Books

Thanks to Fish Book Co for giving to Kyle a "Today I am" Book, i had yet another opportunity to help Kyle with letter recognition. Books with few and big words are really good because it helps the child to understand that by putting letters together, we can form words with meanings, as well as Kyle is able to finger trace the letters in the word.



8) Fridge Magnets

My very lovely sister, Godma, to both my children, D-I-Y the fridge magnets for Kyle. It's a lot of work and goes to show how much she loves my children. I had intentionally asked her to be Kyle's godma the moment he was born, all because i want to foster a very close relationship with her forever. With the passing of my elder sister, my little sister is the only sibling i have left. But her love for my children is more than what i expected. She loves them just as much as I love them too. :) 

Fridge Magnets is good for alphabet recognition as well as we also played fishing with them. It's a good tool to teach words too. 







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