When you engage preschoolers to create alphabet letters using different art tools, materials, and techniques, they are more likely to recognize and learn how letters are formed. When you bring out the art box, think about partaking in some teachable moments instead of just basic scribbles or the infamous coloring books. Here are a few projects to try:
Use collage when forming letters
Draw a box-type letter on a piece of cardboard or poster board. Invite the children to spread glue onto the letter and adhere any of the following materials to make a raised textured letter that they can feel. Think about using sand, seashells, crushed egg shells, paper scraps, dried beans or pasta, buttons, seeds, and even spices (so they can smell the letter). These are just a few ideas and I'm sure you can think of others. Sometimes it is best to coordinate the letter and the material used in the collage to make the letter sound. For example, when making a letter B, use buttons or with the letter S, use sand.
Letter characters are fun to create
Give each child a block letter and colored markers. Invite them to 'dress up' the letter by drawing in facial features, hair, and designs. You can even give the children scraps of fabric for them to dress up the alphabet letter with clothes. Challenge the children to give their letter a name, such as "Anna A" or "Kasey" K.
Did you know your fingerprints are just for you?
Do the children know that they have unique fingerprints and that no one else has the same prints? Even though they are young, it's a piece of information well worth mentioning. For this alphabet art craft, have the children stamp thumbprints to create letters. Take a foam produce tray and place a few layers of paper towels inside. The towels act as a stamp pad when tempera paint is poured on top. Have each child put a thumb into the paint tray and stamp out a thumbprint in the shape of a letter. It's best if the teacher lightly draws the letter on paper for the children to follow. Another variation is to fill in a block letter with a number of fingerprints, maybe in different colors too.
Learn about negative prints
Tape an alphabet letter pattern onto a sheet of paper. You could have the "letter of the week" or individual letters that represent the child's initials. With a pencil eraser or cotton swab, have the children make dots with paint all over the paper. This is like a form of pointillism. When the paper is dry, remove the template and the alphabet letter will stand out from the decorated background.
These are only a few of the many alphabet art ideas you can do with preschoolers. Make everyday a learning day with creative art activities.
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