Has the Christmas craziness taken over at your house yet? I’m still desperately trying to hold off until December 1st but the odd activity is now creeping in. A few weeks ago the youngest two (aged 18 months and 3) explored green via process art, so I though it would be a good idea to turn that into a Christmas tree…
This tree is double sided and features both the alphabet in lowercase and numbers on the reverse. We plan to do similar activities with both with this ‘sticker match’ game.
As i’m increasingly fond of saying, in the very early years I think that learning the alphabet should be about familiarisation, rather than drill style repetition. Z has now done countless alphabet recognition activities in various guises – it’s a slower approach for sure but it also doesn’t feel like a chore to her either.
You will need:
- Green paint (alternatively use green card)
- Black permanent marker
- Large dot stickers in a variety of colours
What to do:
We treated the art as an entirely separate activity – we were exploring green to help E learn his colours so the paint part might not be entirely necessary for you and if you want to save some time, try using green card instead.
Once the paint is dry, write the alphabet on the tree in permanent marker, then repeat that step on the large dot stickers.
Invite your little one to match up the stickers to the same letter on the tree. I tended to sportscast (commentate) this part to help Z recognise each letter.
- Sensory play:hands-on activities such as this help develop the brain’s neural pathways. It helps that little ones can feel the letters rather than just see them on the page of a worksheet.
- Hand-eye coordination: the stickers are small so it takes a lot of concentration to pick them up and put them in the right place.
- Fine motor skills and hand-strength: using pincer grip to collect the stickers
- Early literacy: recognising letters (you could also try the same with number recognition)
I would suggest trying this activity from the age of 3 onwards. For extra challenge, when your child is ready, you could try an uppercase / lowercase match.
Like it? Pin it!
If you want to try this activity at a later date, I’ve created this handy graphic so you can pop it on Pinterest!