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Learning activity for preschoolers: Letter recognition

learning activity

As reading becomes a very important time for parents and children, there are some learning activities to make the reading process fun and interactive. One obvious learning activity is to sit down with the children and read an exciting book. Or perhaps, parents and children attend a story time at a local library or bookstore. But reading is more than just looking at books.

There are many ways and tips to help parents encourage reading at home. In particular learning activity, preschoolers play with magnetic letters. This is one fun way to introduce letters and numbers. But if parents don’t have these reading tools, they can use letters from cereal boxes. This is such a fun way to introduce different letters, word sounds and different print of letters.

Another great reading project is creating letters of each child name using paper sentence strips. This promotes learning each child’s name, letter recognition, and writing. Letter recognition can be fun when using everyday reading and writing tools.

Recognizing Letters in a Child’s Name

Learning Activity Part A: Preschoolers Creating Letters from Cereal Boxes

Materials:

  • various cereal boxes
  • scissors
  • plastic bag or box

Instructions:

  • Begin by cutting the letters from cereal boxes. But be careful: only adults should do this task.
  • Cut as many available letters as possible.
  • Also, cut Spanish letters too, if possible, such as ñ, ll.
  • Next, rearrange the letters according to consonants and vowels.
  • Have the child find the first letter of his or her name (Figure 1).
  • Then, instruct to follow the rest of the letters of the name.
  • Make sure to sound out the letters as they are being formed.
  • Finally, have fun making all sorts of words and practicing the sounds each letter or syllables can make.
learning activity
Figure 1

 

Learning Activity Part B: Begin to create their names using sentence strips

Materials:

  • sentence strips – height: 1 inch with 1/2 inch dividers
  • pencils
  • piece of cardboard paper
  • construction papers
  • crayons
  • glittery stickers
  • regular glue
  • safety scissors
  • summer or spring patterns
  • decorative scissors (optional)

Instructions:

  • Write the child’s name on a piece of a sentence strip in block letters.
  • Print out the fun flower, ladybug, and butterfly shapes.
  • Cut and trace them onto a piece of sentence strip. Next, allow the children to take part in tracing or writing.
  • Take a piece of cardboard paper and remove one of the layers. So, you should have a wavy cardboard (Figure 2).
Figure 2
  • Then, place the sentence strips with the child’s name on top of the wavy cardboard.
  • Use crayons to color in the letters in a horizontal way (Figure 3).
  • Repeat for the ladybug, flower, and butterfly shapes.
  • Allow the child to cut one of the shapes.
  • Next, cut the letters and the shapes.
  • Cut a decorative border of a piece of construction paper or tagboard with decorative scissors.
Figure 3
  • Paste the letters, stickers, and shapes with regular glue.
  • As the child is having fun selecting the glittery stickers or sparkles, place them on the sheet.
  • For added decoration, place the sheet on a black piece of construction paper to represent a frame for the beautiful creation.
  • Then, let all the pieces dry and set aside.
  • Once dry, display it on a fridge or wall to practice the spelling and sounds of the child’s name. Tip: try to do this as often as possible.

Learning to practice the alphabet is an exciting time to learn letters and sounds. More fun is having children recognize letters from everyday items like cereal boxes. And this game of letters allows them to recognize their letters in their name.

It is also pleasant to see the child’s name in block letters or in a fun arrangement. When children begin to notice the letters in their name, they begin to find letters of the alphabet and boost their self-esteem.

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Spanish books for children to learn about autumn

The fall season can bring so much joy to children. Many kids will know it is the beginning of the new school year, Halloween, and Thanksgiving. And many of them will also enjoy apple and pumpkin picking. In fact, many families will perhaps enjoy a wonderful afternoon at parks and fall festivals.

How can parents help their children learn about the significance of the change of the seasons? The following book reviews can help the bilingual parent or educator to select adequate stories to read to children and learn more about autumn.

Spanish autumn books for children

“Las hojas en otoño” by Martha E. H. Rustad

Read about the wonderful and colorful leaves of autumn. This non-fiction is easy to read with beautiful photographs of various leaves during the fall season. Glossary and other resources included.

Bilingual book. Age group: 5 and up; ISBN: 9781429632607

“Los animales en otoño” by Martha E. H. Rustad

How do animals get ready for autumn? Children can learn in four easy-to-read chapters how squirrels, beavers, rabbits, birds, butterflies, bees, and bears prepare for the coming fall season. Glossary and extra resources included.

Bilingual book. Age group: 5 and up; ISBN: 9781429632584

“Las personas en otoño” by Martha E. H. Rustad

If animals in different habitats prepare for autumn, do people also get ready for the fall season? Learn the traditional signs of fall such as back to school, Halloween, harvest time, Thanksgiving, and other family events. Glossary and other resources included.

Bilingual book. Age group: 5 and up; ISBN: 9781429632614

“¿Cómo sabes que es otoño?” by Allan Fowler

In this easy to read picture book, children can learn additional information about the signs of the fall season. From bundling up into warmer clothes to celebrating Thanksgiving, autumn can bring many great family events.

Spanish book. Age group: 5 and up; ISBN: 0516349228

Como Sabes Que Es Otono? (Rookie Read-About Science) (Spanish Edition)

“Veo el otoño” by Charles Ghigna

This delightful picture book tells the story of a little boy in search of autumn. To his surprise, he finds the fall season everywhere he looks: school, home, during Halloween and Thanksgiving, at the park, and at apple picking.

Bilingual book. Age group: 5 and up; ISBN: 9781404873070

I See Fall (Spanish edition)

Find these great books at your local library, bookstore or Amazon. Add them today to your home library.

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Learning about seasons around the hemisphere

Seasons change and they bring much change around the world. Perhaps, the leaves are turning color or the birds don’t sing or chirp as much as they used to. Another sign that fall is approaching might be less sunlight. All of this indicates the summer season is gradually transitioning to the fall or autumn season.

As C. S. Lewis greatly interprets the fall season as:

“But I remember more dearly autumn afternoons in bottoms that lay intensely silent under old great trees”

Did you know that this change in season is due to the Earth’s rotation around the sun? As a matter of fact, the Earth is divided into the Northern Hemisphere and the Southern Hemisphere, just to represent what happens to the sun exposure on earth.

Since the Earth rotates around the sun on an axis, the exposure to the sun varies giving the different seasons. In the months of May, June, and July, the Earth is exposed the most to the sun, providing the summer season in the northern hemisphere. While in the southern hemisphere, it is winter with less sun exposure in that part of the world.

Fall brings beautiful colors in leaves.

However, in the months of December, January, and February, the Earth is exposed the least to the sun, allowing the winter season to occur in the northern hemisphere. In turn, the southern hemisphere has the summer season. Seasons are categorized as:

  • spring = primavera (vernal),
  • summer = verano (estival),
  • autumn or fall = otoño (autumnal), and
  • winter = invierno (hibernal).

Of course, in a yearly calendar, there are four important dates (besides holidays) that tells when the seasons change. In the 2012 calendar, these dates are or were March 20th, June 20th, Sept. 22nd, and Dec. 21st, each represents the equinox and solstice points in a calendar year. The year 2012 is special since it is considered as a leap year.

The longest summer day occurred on June 20th and the longest winter day will occur on December 21st, when night and day are equally 12 hours apart. Equinox is derived from the Latin ‘equal night’ and solstice ‘to stand still sun’. Fall or autumn season will begin on September 22nd. In the calendar year, you might experience spring/summer between March and June and fall/winter between September and December.

Since seasons change, climate changes too, which affects how different species survive. In the winter months, birds migrate to warmer climates and bears hibernate until spring.

Isn’t amazing how nature works for all living creatures on Earth? How are you getting ready for fall or autumn?