For Children Learning to Read, Not All Letters Are Equal

The Alphabet Song

If you don’t take your child’s reading and literacy VERY seriously and work on it consistently, by the time they enter school they may be so FAR behind as to never catch up!  That’s why we say here at Honey Bear; “Education: It’s a Family Affair”.  No one loves your child as much as you do.  There is nobody who can replace you.  Not even Honey Bear Preschool! So jump right in and have fun with reading, letter recognition and teaching your toddlers and preschoolers.

The alphabet song is a traditional and wonderful way to teach children the joy of learning and the rudiments of reading.  But not all letters are equally important with regard to reading. The alphabet song pays equal attention to all letters and this is not the best way to learn how to read.

The Most Important Letters

The most important letters are the vowels: a, e, i, o and u. So when teaching your children their “letters” make sure to pay special attention to the vowels.  These vowels are five or ten or twenty times more important than certain letters like “q” or “z”.  So you should review them more often and present them more often than other letters. The vowels include:

  • a
  • e
  • i
  • o
  • u

Letters needing less emphasis when you teach your child reading include:

  • Q, z, f…….etc.

One Sound at a Time

One sound at a time when you teach your preschoolers or toddlers the letters. When you are introducing letter sounds, when you are directly teaching your preschoolers the sound of a vowel such as “a”, make sure to do so consistently.  That is, just teach the short a sound until it has been completely mastered.  Use words like cat that have the short “a” sound naturally.  You should do the same for the other vowels and the other letters.

The I is capitalized because it is a word unto itself and very simple for a child to learn I – one of the most important words in the English language.

Learning Letter Shapes

Letter shapes are confusing for a child to learn. So when you teach your toddler or preschooler letters and sounds just teach one shape at a time.  WE STRONGLY recommend that you teach just LOWERCASE letters.  Small a, b, c….. Mostly words are written in lower case anyway so learning lower case letter shapes and associated sounds is very important when you begin to teach your preschooler or toddler what we call in professional education circles, “sound symbol associations” .

At Honey Bear Preschool and Childcare we have fun every day teaching preschoolers to read and recognize letters.  We do also trace letters, read aloud to our children and engage them in small group conversation.  We have MANY books.  Please check your child’s classroom to see what we have available.  Who knows, your child’s favorite book might be sitting our shelf just waiting to be discovered and treasured by the two of you.

And in case you were wondering, yes we do teach the alphabet song and we love it!

Read more to find out what makes Honey Bear Preschool and Child Care Center different from all the others!


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