Ezra recently hit a sensitive period for letters and sounds. He started pointing out words to me about a week ago. Everywhere he sees letters, he announces that there are words to read. He also pretends to “sound out” words like he has seen Ender do so many times, except in Ezra’s English all words begin with “k-, k-, k-“. (as in “k-, k-, k- dog”.)
Ender has patiently been telling him what all the different letters are called, while I tell Ezra the sounds when he asks. He loves the letters W and X and can find them just about anywhere those particular letters can be found. I added language work to his shelves a few days ago, and he’s choosing to spend much of his morning with the alphabet.
Ezra’s favorite alphabet works:
:: The Leap Frog Fridge Phonics. He puts a letter in the slot and it sings a short song about what sound each letter makes.
:: Felt letters. I cut big felt letters for Ender when he was three and I pulled them out again for Ezra. Ezra sometimes treats them like shapes and builds with them, but I’ve also put out just a few letters some days (like just the vowels some days, or just the letters in his name, etc.) and he likes to ask the names/sounds of each letter. In following with Montessori I give him the sound right now.
:: A name place mat. I printed his name on a piece of cardstock and laminated it. Ezra can trace over his name with marker over and over, or we can use dough to shape into letters- tracing is really fun for him right now, so he’s using this work quite often.
:: In the same vein as the item above, I made a few “trace mats” for Ezra that have a dotted line to follow from one object to another. He can use a marker on these, but usually he just traces with his finger or with a paint brush. Whatever medium he’d like works for me!