5 Learning Letter Sound Activities for Preschoolers

Language development is a big part of early education for children. Oral language skills are at the very foundation of a child's ability to communicate with others and achieve academic success. Letter sound recognition is the first stage of language development because it provides children with the awareness of the sounds that various letters and letter combinations make. This is essential to learn reading and writing skills as it allows them to discover new words, understand spelling, and decode written language. 

It's especially important to make learning to read fun for young children. Children love letter sound games. They easily absorb information at a young age and are eager to imitate their parents and teachers, making it an ideal time to capture their attention with fun and engaging phonic activities like an alphabet treasure hunt, letter sound bingo, and letter sound wheels. 

Understanding Letter Sound Recognition 

Letter sound recognition is the building block for reading and writing skills. First, children learn the relationship between each letter and the sound they make. Next, they begin to blend sounds together to form words and then sentences. Phonic activities like letter and sound-matching games can help a child grasp this concept more easily. 

Phonological awareness is crucial for reading comprehension because every written word corresponds to a spoken word. Readers need to develop letter sound proficiency to gain awareness of the sounds of letters and combinations of letters to understand the code between these two types of communication. From sound recognition, they move on to reading and then spelling. Play-based learning is a powerful way to teach language development. Discover some fun and interactive games to play with your children to improve their language skills. 

1. Alphabet Treasure Hunt 

Letter sound activities for preschoolers need to capture their attention to get them involved and invested. Creating a scavenger hunt is an awesome activity for young children as it gives them the chance to get and move around in their space while learning. You can plan out a scavenger hunt for any setting, from your home to the classroom to an outdoor play park. Even the grocery store has opportunities for an alphabet treasure hunt. You can approach scavenger hunts involving the alphabet in several ways: 

  • Provide a list of items for children to find that correspond to various letter sounds. 

  • Have your children check off each letter of the alphabet as they find grocery items that match the letter sound. 

  • Write out the alphabet on a large sheet of paper and place it outside. Encourage your kids to find objects that match each letter and place them on the correct spot on the alphabet paper. 

  • Alphapals plush letter sets are perfect for a version of this game. Hide letters around the house and give children various letter sound clues to follow to find the hidden treasure! 

There are many ways you can adapt an alphabet treasure hunt to suit any age, skill level, and environment. It's also great for tactile learning where children are better off learning by doing. If you're wondering what tactile learner is, check out our piece on it! 

2. Sound Cups 

Are you looking for a simple yet effective game to teach letter sounds? Sound cups are a great choice. Start by labeling 26 disposable clear punch cups with letters. You can add an image that matches the letter sound if you like. Collect some small trinkets objects in a basket. Items like small plastic toys, blocks, buttons, jewelry, etc. work well. Children can then sort the trinkets into the cup with the letter that matches the object's beginning sound. 

3. Letter Sound Bingo 

Bingo games make perfect letter sound activities. Teachers, parents, and caretakers can design bingo cards with letters and images to enhance letter recognition through gameplay. They are simple to create. Each square of the bingo card has a picture. The educator has a set of cards that each contain a letter of the alphabet. Children need to locate a picture that begins with the letter sound of each card in turn. The first player to get a complete vertical, horizontal, or diagonal row wins! 

4. Erase the Sound 

Letter sound activities for kindergarten like Erase the Sound are easy and fun for kids to play. To play the game, draw a picture on a small dry erase board. Have each child take a turn to erase the part of the picture that begins with the letter sound they are given. 

For example, in a drawing of a snowman, you have multiple options like "H" for hat, "N" for nose, and "B" for buttons. Continue the game until the entire image is erased. 

5. Letter Sound Wheels 

Letter sound recognition activities like letter sound wheels are great to teach difficult sounds. The concept is simple. Each letter is placed at the center of the wheel with a collection of eight images surrounding it. For example, the "A" wheel features pictures of an astronaut, a cactus, a donut, an ant, and more. The job of the child is to attach clips to the four images that match the letter's sound. 

You can create your own letter wheels or purchase them by pack or download. It's a good idea to print the wheels on heavy paper to stand up to multiple uses. Better yet, have them laminated. 

Alphapals and Letter Sound Recognition 

Playing games with young children is an excellent approach to phonic activities because it gets them excited to learn about the different letter sounds and how they fit together to form words. Games also provide reinforcement of the skills being taught. Allowing children to take a hands-on approach to learning by incorporating multiple senses is an ideal way to help them absorb the message. 

It's easy to give kids an interactive and sensory learning experience with the help of Alphapals. From lowercase a to lowercase z, our alphabet letters make letter sound games fun and interactive. They come in a variety of sizes, colors, weights, and textures and help children understand how letters and the sounds they make create words.  

We're not done yet either! We've also got plush keychains to accessorize your child's backpack for the school year. Grab a k keychain fro Kennedy or a j keychain for James. We've got a letter for any name.

These plush letters have limitless applications to teach letter sound activities or spark your child's imagination so they can create their own, so shop today!