Tuesday, August 9, 2011

The A, B, C's of learning to read...let's start with your name

Alphabet recognition is the first step to reading, and what better to way to begin teaching a young child the letters of the alphabet than by teaching them how to spell their very own name.  
As an educator, mother and literacy advocate, I can attest to the importance of teaching a child the alphabet. While many young children can sing the alphabet song, and some may even be able to rattle off the letters of their name, if they don’t recognize the individual letters, it is not preparing them for school. Giving them the gift of letter recognition boosts their confidence in social situation, and more importantly, jump starts their enthusiasm for wanting to read more.
What to do you ask? Its time for arts and crafts, follow these simple steps:
1. Take an 81/2 x 11 piece of paper and fold it twice, so you have a square.
2. Cut the edges so you have 4 pieces of paper, depending on the length of the name, you may need to do another piece of paper. 
3. Bind the pages together like a book, using a staple or hole punch with string
4. Write the child's full name on the "cover", then put just one letter on each page of the book...all done!
For some visuals, check out these pictures of how easy it is to make a name book yourself!

Start with the child's full name on the cover
Stencils are a perfect tool for creating the letters

Make sure each page only has one letter.
Be sure to include the entire alphabet on the last page.