River Forest Public Library River Forest Public Library

December Early Literacy Tip

Letter Knowledge

Once children are aware that words exist and are everywhere, the next step is learning letters. Letter Knowledge is being able to distinguish letters as individual shapes, as well as knowing their names and sounds. Essentially, to read words, children must first understand that each word is made up of individual letters.   

How do we practice Letter Knowledge at home?   

Alphabet books are a great way to start practicing this skill. As you see what each letter stands for, your child learns that the beginnings of words have different letters. Apple begins with A but banana begins with B. This is how we start to see letters as different shapes!   

Singing the alphabet to a different tune can also help. Sing the ABCs to the tune of Mary Had a Little Lamb to help break up letter sounds to help kids see there are differences.   

You can go even further back to basics and practice shapes. Looking at I Spy or other search-and-find books helps children separate different shapes and illustrations on each page. Some of those images even include letter shapes specifically for practicing Letter Knowledge!   

There are so many ways to practice Letter Knowledge to help our budding readers learn that letters are everywhere!