Activity Sneak Peak:
- Under 1 minute set-up time
- No cleanup
- Works on fine motor and cognitive skills
- For 18+ months
Your toddler can begin to learn
This is a multi-sensory activity using stickers as a fine motor task while also helping your child to learn to recognize letters.
A Multi-Sensory Approach to Learning
Since toddlers learn through play and exploration of their environment, it’s not enough to just sit them down and review flash cards when teaching. They understand best when taking a hands-on approach to learning.
Every child also has their own style of learning. Some children may learn best while jumping up and down, feeling objects with their fingers, or listening to a song.
Work on 1 Letter at a Time
There’s no need to rush learning letters with your toddler. They will learn at their own pace and you will discover their learning style and speed as you go.
You can pick a letter of the week and do this activity several times with the same letter. This will ensure that they really retain the letters that they’re learning.
What you need:
What to do:
This is a simple activity with very little preparation, set-up, or clean up.
1.Draw a large “bubble” letter, as pictured above, on construction paper. You can start with A or any letter you choose.
2. Demonstrate for your child how to pick off a sticker and place it on the letter. You can have them place the stickers on the lines/outline of the letters or in the blank space.
3. As they’re placing the stickers on, talk about the letter a lot. Tell them what this letter is, ask them what the letter is, and tell them words that start with the letter.
4. You can have them place as many stickers on the letter as you like.
5. When you’re done with the stickers, you can have them color/scribble on the letter.
Skills that this activity addresses
This is a fun activity that addresses a variety of skills.
For this sticker letter learning activity, the following skills are being strengthened for your toddler:
- Language/Vocabulary: Hearing and talking about different objects (paper, sticker, letter, line)
- Cognition: Learning and understanding new concepts (letters of the alphabet, push down, take off)
- Fine motor skills: Improving pincer grasp (thumb and pointer finger brought together) when holding a sticker, bilateral coordination by holding the paper with one hand and peeling the sticker with another.
- Multi-sensory learning: using the whole body as other modes of learning to teach new concepts (besides just speaking to them to learn).
Ways to incorporate cognition and language
You really can and SHOULD incorporate cognition (knowledge) and language into any activity you are doing with your little one. Just merely talking through the steps that they’re performing will help build their vocabulary and understanding about new words and concepts.
Remember your toddler is constantly listening and absorbing everything around them, including language.
Here are a few ways to build cognition and language during this activity:
- Point to the paper and ask, What color is this?
- Ask them to point to the green paper, letter C, etc.
- Work on opposite concepts like on, off, above, below, big, and small
- Vocabulary words such as letter, alphabet, paper, stickers, marker, line, peel, place
Ways to work on fine motor skills
Fine motor skills allow us to use the small muscles of our hands and fingers. They enable us to grab, manipulate, turn, twist, and hold objects.
Bilateral coordination also allows us to use both hands together in a coordinated manner usually to transfer objects or stabilize with one hand to manipulate with the other.
This activity can help develop these skills in a variety of ways.
- Have your child hold onto the sticker sheet with one hand as they peel off the sticker with the other. They may need some help from you to get the sticker started though.
- Be sure they are holding the sticker with a pincer grasp (pads of thumb and pointer)
- Have them place the sticker down onto a specific spot on the paper, of your choice.
- Push the sticker down firmly with their pointer finger.
- Hold the paper down with the opposite hand as they push the sticker down.
- When coloring at the end, hold the crayon with a nice, rounded tripod grasp. Tip: Use these Finger Crayons for younger toddlers. They’re perfect for small hands and promote the perfect grasp. *Highly Recommend*
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Although your child may have the ability to learn their letters at 2, it’s not a necessary skill until they are approaching 4 or even 5. So don’t stress over teaching them too much and make learning fun!