Every day ( well most…) I give my son a note or joke in his lunch box. One day I was rushed and my handwriting which is normally very clear was a mix of cursive and printing and he came home saying ” I couldn’t read it!” which frustrated him and immediately I knew what I wanted to do. My goal for this activity was two fold. I wanted my son to learn to recognize letters in various fonts as well as work on his fine motor skills. This is so simple that it can be done with children in various levels of letter recognition. As you will see my daughter who is 2 got in on the action too.
- Gather your materials. You will need paper with letter printed in different fonts. I used picmonkey.com to make a sheet of letters because I liked their non standard fonts better than the ones I had available on my word processing program. Either way print them out so the letters are big enough to cut out. You will also need a glue stick , paper, scissors and a pencil.
- Start by writing a letter on the paper. I had my son do his initials. Depending on your child’s letter recognition skills and ability to sit for a long activity use one or multiple letters.
- Next cut out the letters – I cut them into strips and had my son cut some. He soon told me this would take FOREVER complete with a dramatic sigh so I grabbed a bunch and cut them for him. Now some may see this as me being a softy but let me explain the thinking behind this decision. If your child is frustrated or overwhelmed by part of the activity one thing they are not doing is learning. Break it down. Cutting the letters took some of the fine motor ( specifically scissor practice) out of the activity but it also gave my son back his spark of wanting to do the activity. To me the end goal is well worth the adjustments.
- Start sorting. ” Is that and n? It is! Cool font Mom!” He sorted all of the letters first in piles then he laid them all out in a letter army taking time to say each letter. Some in stylized cursive fonts were very tricky .
- Next add glue to the written letters.
- Add them on.
- For younger children break it down even further. For my daughter I gave her just one letter, provided the letters for her and even made a few larger ones with some crayons . She knew just what to do!
For even older children try doing their name , printing the letters in various colors or painting the finished collages with watercolors after gluing.