Inside: This awesome collection of preschool literacy ideas are perfect for summer break. Have fun with water, chalk, sensory, and more while exposing young children to the alphabet!
“I’m looking for ways to keep my preschooler interested in the alphabet while he’s at home on summer break.”
This was a recent email I got from a dear reader. While I have my own fun preschool literacy ideas, I wanted to expand the collection.
And so, I asked my favorite early childhood bloggers. They didn’t disappoint. In fact, I got over 35 of the very best preschool literacy ideas. This collection is amazing!
Best part? No workbooks or flashcards are involved. Nope. These are hands-on, FUN activities with a summer twist. They can be done indoors or outdoors. (Who wants to be indoors on a nice summer day?)
35+ Preschool Literacy Ideas that are Perfect for Summer
Dish Washing: Fill up a tub and wash the letter dishes. (Growing Book by Book)
Container of soapy water, container of fresh water, plastic dishes, Sharpie
Alphabet Wash: Place letters in sudsy water for an alphabet wash. (Little Bins for Little Hands)
Two water bins, sponge, letters
Letter Squirting: Write your child’s name on cups and use the hose to squirt each cup as the letter is recognized. (Inspiration Laboratories)
Cups, masking tape, Sharpie, table, water hose
Letter Table: Put letter stamps in your outdoor water table. (How Wee Learn)
Bin with water, stamps, surface to stamp on
Letter Sprinkling: Sprinkle water from a watering can while learning letters in the garden. (The Pleasantest Thing)
Watering can, water
Chalk and Water: Practice writing letters with chalk and water. (Coffee Cups and Crayons)
Chalk, bucket of water, paintbrush
Outdoor Chalkboard: Make your own outdoor chalkboard to practice writing letters. (Rhythms of Play)
Interior wooden door, paint supplies, screws and anchors
Chalk Letters: Write letters on the sidewalk and trace them with rocks. (And Next Comes L)
Chalk, small rocks
Alphabet Hunt: Go on a backyard alphabet hunt. (Teach Mama)
Large sheet of paper, marker, items from the yard
Name Puzzle: Make a name puzzle that can be played indoors or outdoors.
Supplies: Markers and cardstock
Name Hunt: Go on a Little Bo Peep name hunt. (Messy Little Monster)
Squares of green card, black card, white cupcake liners, googly eyes
Alphabet Bins and Boxes
Letter Bin: Fill a bin with foam letters for alphabet recognition fun.
Foam letters, bin, scoops
Alphabet Box: Make your own letter box that can be used all summer long for literacy activities.
Storage drawer cabinet, letters (stickers, foam, or magnetic)
Alphabet Fishing: Letters on ping pong balls are fun for fishing out of water. (The Imagination Tree)
Ping pong balls, bin filled with water, Sharpie, nets
Going Fishing: Fish for letters in an ocean alphabet. (Kitchen Floor Crafts)
Craft foam, Sharpie, pool noodle
Alphabet Large Motor
Freeze Dance: Practice phonics while playing a letter sound freeze dance. (Meaningful Mama)
Water Balloon Fun: Play an alphabet game with water balloons. (Teaching Mama)
Water balloons, alphabet letters, small objects
Water Balloon Smash: Use water balloons to play letter smash. (School Time Snippets)
Water balloons, Sharpie, chalk, water balloon pump
Alphabet Race Track: Make a giant letter race track and form it outdoors to spell words. (The Adventures of Adam)
Alphabet Dig: Dig for letters in the dirt. (Mom to 2 Posh Lil Divas)
Dirt, letters, shovel
Letter Jump: Get moving while participating in a noisy letter jump. (The Imagination Tree)
Alphabet Swat: Get the body moving while playing an alphabet bug swat game. (Modern Preschool)
Fly swatter, chalk
Alphabet Kites: Make paper letter or word kites with wet chalk. (The Preschool Tool Box)
Square piece of paper, chalk, painter’s tape, cup, water
Frozen Letters: Make some frozen letters for a cool literacy activity on a hot summer day. (The Imagination Tree)
Alphabet ice trays, water, food coloring
Erupting Letters: Experience letter eruptions outdoors. (Learn Play Imagine)
Cornstarch, baking soda, water, food coloring, foam brushes, Kool Aid, squeeze bottles
More Literacy Fun
Garage Door Letters: Get outside and have fun with magnetic letters on the garage door. (TheOT Toolbox)
Magnetic garage door, magnetic letters
Octopus Hot Dogs: While focusing on the letter O, make octopus hot dogs. (A Mom with a Lesson Plan)
Hot dog, knife
Literacy Picnic: Have a read and draw picnic. (No Time for Flash Cards)
Book, clipboard, blanket, art materials
Writing Center: Create an outdoor writing center. (Lalymom)
Easel, writing tools, accessories
Sensory Fun: After reading the book “We’re Going on a Bear Hunt”, go on a sensory adventure in your backyard. (Play and Learn Everyday)
Little people, various props that go with book
Popsicle Stick Letters: Make a letter recognition activity using popsicle sticks. (How Wee Learn)
Popsicle sticks, marker, clothespins
Shell Letters: Write letters on real shells for a fun summer alphabet activity. (The Imagination Tree)
Shells, Sharpie, dyed rice
More summer fun for preschoolers:
Summer Activity Plans
I’ve teamed up with other early childhood teachers and homeschoolers to put together these hands-on summer activities for toddlers and preschoolers!
Easy to follow plans that include activity modifications and adaptations to meet the needs of all learners.
For more information, click on the graphics below:
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