Letter recognition activities and alphabet intervention ideas for kindergarten students. This blog post will help to provide Ideas to help your students with letter naming and give you a few ideas on how to teach letter sounds to struggling students.
Letter Recognition Activities: It starts with an assessment!
The very first step in targeting your instruction is knowing where your starting point is. We must know what students already know and what their next steps are. With kindergarten, it would be really difficult to have usable data since essentially there are 85 questions you need to ask JUST for letter/sound recognition (26 capital letters, 28 lowercase letters [includes a book “a” and a book “g”], and 31 sounds [consanant and short/long vowels]). Quite frankly, there are not enough sticky notes in the world for me to keep track of that information for 20-25 students. This is why I love ESGI. It keeps track of everything for you AND you have a ton of usable data that you can turn into action.
You can grab a 60 day free trial of ESGI by clicking: ESGI FREE TRIAL This link will also give you a nice discount if you decide to purchase it. THE best part of the free trial… you don’t need to put your credit card in.
You can learn more about ESGI by watching this video or reading this blog post: ESGI: Embracing Assessments… PSST You Will LOVE THEM!
Let me show you one of my favorite reports from ESGI. It is the parent letter! I sent these home just about every 2 weeks for most of my class, but weekly for my intervention students. This kept parents in the know. But let’s talk about your intervention students for a minute.
Quick story: When The Perfect Son was in kindergarten, I was not a teacher yet. I met with his teacher and she told me, “Matt is doing well with reading, but he needs to work on comprehension. Can you work on that at home?” What did I say? “Sure.” I said “sure” because I was too embarrassed to tell her that I did not know what that looked like. Every time I tell that story at conferences I give, I tear up. I tear up because I think about all of those parents out there who say, “sure” but have no idea how to help their child OR they do things like drill and kill. Let’s help our parents out.
For my intervention students, I ask the parents to come in so I can show them some activities they can do with their child that is FUN! Then I give the parents these resources and we practice them with their child.
Resist the urge to just send these home with your student in their backpack. They will be found 2 weeks later with an old smelly banana peel. (Voice of experience).
The letter gives parents something to focus on. The cards offer suggestions on fun ways to practice phonemic awareness skills and letter/sound/sight word identification.
Letter Recognition Activities: During Small Group
Take opportunities to reinforce letters and learning. This is important… don’t just have them sort or write, make sure they say the letter name and sound each time. “H, hat, /h/.”
Magnet Activity Suggestion:
Using magnets is a great tactile way for students to gain experience with letters. These are 3 dimensional and allow for more connections. Have students work with the letters that need to learn next. This picture below shows a student who has just about mastered their letter identification and sounds. So the student had more letters to replace.
Path of Motion Activity Suggestion:
The student writes the letter while repeating, “H, hat, /h/.” Then I have them circle the one they felt was the best.
This item below was born out of necessity. Wouldn’t it be magical if all of your students in your intervention group had the same letter needs? Real word… that never happens. However, I wanted my students to all do the same activity as a warm-up, but with the letters THEY needed.
You can see how this works in this quick video.
Once my students understood the tasks, I was able to quickly find a volunteer to work with them to complete these tasks. The students don’t need me to guide them once they know what to do, BUT they DID need someone there to support them as they said, “N, nut, /n/” every time they touched a letter. Where did I get volunteers? I borrowed a few 4th-grade buddies to work with them each day for 15 mins. Then I could do other tasks with my intervention students during my small group time.
You can find this resource by clinking: Intervention THE BUNDLE ~ Editable! Help Me! Help You!
That link includes a packet for letter recognition (3 focus letters at a time), sight word recognition (3 sight word at a time), and big sight word recognition (6 sight words at a time). You can also just get them individually. You can get a FREE sample of this letter intervention at the end of this blog post.
You can read more about sight word interventions by clicking: Sight Word Interventions
Letter recognition activities: Read to me books
A few years ago I made these fun books with Elizabeth Coller. Each book focuses on one letter.
BUT we added a QR code to the cover. In this way, the child can scan the book and it is read to them. They can even take the book home and hear it there as well.
This is a video for the CVC version, but it will give you an idea of who they work.
You can try a sample of each of these interactive books by downloading the TPT PREVIEW in the links below:
Letter Recognition Activities: Center Activities
We also want their learning to be permanent, so centers are a great opportunity to practice and overlearn! These students are putting the cards in alphabetical order.
You can find these centers: Anytime Literacy Centers
WHEW! Longest post ever, but I hope you found a few ideas for letter recognition activities.
Would you like to try the Letter Intervention file for FREE? Simply add your email to the box below and it will be sent your way!
NOTE: Many schools block the access of Google Files (what you need to hear the recorded files.) So, if you are not hearing the video after you download it, that could be the problem. You can try another email address.