Friday, August 17, 2012

Stamping Letters

This is such a simple activity, and yet it's so meaningful for early learners.

There is a period of time, typically when a child is 2 or 3, when they exhibit interest in learning letters but do not yet have the fine motor control to reliably write letters on their own. In order to honor and encourage the innate interest in literacy at this early stage (and yes, you really, really, really do want to encourage this exploration), parents and teachers must come up with ways to help build letter recognition without reliance upon writing.

Enter... stamps!

I bought this set for $1 at one craft store or another, and have bought other sets with different fonts since then. Ink pads should run you a couple dollars and you can use any scrap paper you have on hand, so this is all in all a very inexpensive but very meaningful activity. 

 You can be creative with implementation, depending upon your learner's needs. For example, you can call out a letter and ask your child to find it and stamp it. Maybe your child is working on how to spell her name, so you might ask her to find the letters which make her name.
 You can even stamp some words yourself, saying the sounds each letter makes as you stamp it, to help your child realize that each letter makes it's own sound and that the collective sounds make words.
 The added bonus this activity offers is that it's more than just "word work." Using stamps like these promotes excellent fine motor skill development, thereby preparing your child to begin to write even as she learns to recognize her letters.


Do you use stamps in your homeschool?

7 comments:

  1. Never would have thought of that. Awesome!

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    Replies
    1. Ah, the $1 craft bin inspires so much... !

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  2. Such a great and simple pre-writing activity.

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    Replies
    1. I don't know about you Jennifer, but "simple" is essential around here! :)

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