If you have a child in preschool or kindergarten he can mostly likely recognize some, if not all of his letters. Once letter recognition is mastered, young children need to move on to letter sound recognition. This is one of the basic building blocks to learning to read. While there are many everyday opportunities to help your child learn letter sounds, there are also some excellent toys on the market that make learning letter sounds fun for your child. As the mother of a 4 year old, and an educator, these are the best toys for teaching letter sounds I have found.
LeapFrog Fridge Phonics. I have seen this particular toy, which helps with learning letter sounds, on many refrigerators. The LeapFrog Fridge Phonics toy is a simple electronic base along with all 26 letters. Young children place a letter into the base and press it. The LeapFrog Fridge Phonics toy then launches into a catchy tune explaining the sounds each letter makes. The LeapFrog Fridge Phonics game is great for young children learning letter sounds because the toy is very friendly for small hands. Children can easily manipulate the toy itself and there is virtually no learning curve when learning how to use it. The letter sounds are accurate and clear and the fact that the pieces are magnetic keeps the many pieces together in one easily accessible space.
Lakeshore Alphabet Mystery Box. The Lakeshore Alphabet Mystery Box is a great toy for teaching letter sounds. While this toy requires a little more parent interaction, your child will find it as entertaining as you find it educational. To use the Lakeshore Alphabet Mystery Box, children reach into the box blindly and pull out an object. She may find an egg, a tiny van, a bicycle, or a turtle. The child then uses a game board to place the object on the correct letter that the object starts with. This is a wonderfully fun way to work on letter sounds. The Lakeshore Alphabet Mystery Box also comes with an activity guide with more ideas of how to use the toy to help teach letter sounds. There are 26 different objects included: one for each letter of the alphabet.
LeapFrog Phonics Writing Desk. While the LeapFrog Phonics Writing Desk is a little more advanced for children who are already beginning to learn letter sounds, it is still a great letter sound teaching tool. Young children will be enticed by this electronic toy with its computer-like feel. The LeapFrog Phonics Writing Desk will grow with your child as it begins with basic letter recognition, moves on to letter sounds, and finally onto spelling and word recognition. The LeapFrog Phonics Writing Desk is a good investment for parents looking for a letter sounds toy that will grow with a child for further pre-reading development.
The very best teacher a preschooler will encounter is a parent, but great teaching tools are never bad either. Try these three great toys for helping teach your preschooler or kindergartener letter sounds.