Posts Tagged ‘tactile learning’

Make Learning the Alphabet a Fun Tactile Experience

Posted on November 17th, 2010 by Carolyn Hart


Make Learning the Alphabet a Fun Tactile Experience from

Learning the Alphabet Could Include Using a Letter Bag With Your Child

An important step in learning to read is for children to name and quickly recognize letters. As part of learning the alphabet, we will draw a child’s attention to how letters are alike and how they are different. We will encourage children to notice that letters are made up of straight lines (“T”) and curvy lines (“S”) and a combination of the two (“B”). We point out that letters can be very different (“T” and “O”) or very alike (“N” and “M”).

As adults, we tend to think of learning the alphabet as a visual activity (i.e. using books, pencils and paper) but children can also learn to notice how letters are alike and different by using their sense of touch and by actively exploring the letters. When we use a letter bag, we introduce “tactile or Kinaesthetic” learning – learning the alphabet by doing and touching.

This tactile learning letter bag measures about 18" by 12"I made my own letter bag from a bright, colourful fabric print. If you don’t need yours to be durable, a paper bag will work equally well. I used four or five wooden letters that I purchased at a dollar store, you could use foam or wooden letters from a puzzle or magnetic letters from under your fridge! Try to find letters that are relatively “simple.” For this activity, a basic letter, without embellishment is best.

I stitched ribbon into the side seam so the letter learning bag can be tied closed.The letter bag and letters are intended to be used by an adult and a child (or children) together. Ideally, the adult begins by talking about the shapes and attributes of four or five letters before putting them in the bag. Point out how the letters are alike and how they are different. Name the letters. Once the child knows about the letters, put them all in the bag. Have the child reach into the bag (no peeking) and then ask her to see if she can find a particular letter. As she feels the letters, the adult can talk about the attributes of the letter that the child is trying to find.The inside of the letter learning bag - I use four or five wooden letters

For an older child, who knows letter sounds, the adult could say the letter sound and have the child find the right letter in the bag.

Please note: my experience has been that some children find this way of learning the alphabet relatively easy while others will pull all four letters out of the bag before they find the one they are looking for. As adults, we need to be patient and understand that children have different learning styles and the best thing we can do is to offer all sorts of ways for children to discover and learn.

Alphabet Fabric at

Alphabet Fabric at

Wooden Letters at

Wooden Letters at

Hover over the photo for a description of the activity. Click on the photo to read the full post

Alphabet Learning Game for Small GroupsStorytime Standouts Free Printable Alphabets and Games for Learning Letters

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We invite you to follow Storytime Standouts’ Alphabet Craft Board on Pinterest

Follow Storytime Standouts’s board Alphabet Crafts on Pinterest.

Four Ways to Help Your Child Learn the Alphabet Kinesthetically

Posted on February 4th, 2008 by Carolyn Hart


Kinesthetic Learning - 4 Ways for Your Child to Learn the Alphabet

As adults, we tend to think of reading, learning to read and learning to write as a book-based or pencil-based exercise. Keep in mind that children learn in a variety of ways and providing tactile* experiences is one way to help your child to learn letters of the alphabet kinesthetically.

As part of the letter-learning experience, try the following…

  • Encourage your child to build letters. She could use Lego,K’nex,Tinkertoy,Craft Sticks, or Pipe Cleaners. Building letters will help your child to notice how letters are alike and different. It will help your child to notice that letters can be round or straight – or a combimation of round and straight.
  • Have your child make letters in sand, mud or shaving cream. Drawing the alphabet in thick, interesting textures will add an extra dimension to the learning process.
  • Use Masking Tape or Sidewalk Chalk to make giant letters in side or outside. Walk, hop or skip the alphabet. Movement is another way to reinforce learning and it’s fun!
  • Have your child sort magnetic (or other 3-D) Letters. Make three groups: letters that are made up of only straight lines (M,X,I), letters that are made up of only curvy lines (S,O,C) and letters that are made up of a mix of straight and curvy lines (B,D,J). An alphabet sorting activity like this can be done long before children know letter names or sounds.

Remember, children learn in a variety of ways. Providing tactile* experiences makes for fun play and an opportunity to boost letter recognition.

Note: For printable alphabets, The Alphabet Song and activities to help your child learn the alphabet. be sure to check out our Alphabet Recognition page.

* relating to the sense of touch

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