I have a two-year-old son who loves cars, trucks and trains. He is especially fond of Thomas the Tank Engine. He spends most of his time engaging in pretend play with his older brother. They pretend that they own a parking lot or a parking building. Sometimes, they pretend that they own a carwash. Other times, they play with their wooden trains and train tracks. And there are also times when they pretend that they are in a construction site. I guess that's what many little boys do.
Since he will be turning three years old this year, I've been thinking of how I can introduce the alphabet to him in a gentle and fun way. I tried flash cards but he was not very responsive. He is still very playful. My experience with his older brother was different. His older brother was very eager and ready to learn the alphabet and other beginner concepts as early as the latter part of his first year. So, I was challenged to think of something creative to integrate learning into his play activities.
I shared my experience in teaching him with my husband. My husband suggested that I tailor-fit my teaching style and materials to our child's interests. Last weekend, I was so happy to finally come up with an alphabet program that is customized to my little boy's interests and needs at this time -- a transportation-themed alphabet curriculum!
It's very simple (but I spent a lot of time making the worksheets! haha). I placed big upper case letters at the center of each page and included two pictures of vehicles or modes of transportation at the bottom. For some letters, I only included one picture of a mode of transportation. Then, I put broken lines on the letters to make them look like roads.
I will let my son use these sheets as his "play-sheets" where he can move around his toy vehicles with the letters as the roads or waterways.
My goal is to help him become familiar with the letters of the alphabet and their shapes while playing with his favorite toys. I want him also to be familiar with words that start with the different letters of the alphabet. I'm using his interests as a spring board to teaching him this basic concept.
I also plan to use these sheets to improve his fine motor skills. One activity I used to do with his older brother is tracing letters with glue and sprinkling sand on them. Then, I guide my son's hand in tracing the textured letter afterward. This was one of the effective tools I used in preparing my eldest to write. I hope it would also work when I do this activity with my second son.
The boys already tried using these sheets over the weekend. My eldest son was very excited when he saw me working on these sheets. I printed some sample pages and the boys played with them while I continued working on the rest of the letters of the alphabet.
I actually learned new things while making this alphabet curriculum. I discovered modes of transportation I didn't know before while trying to complete the worksheets. I'm excited to share the stories about these vehicles to both of my sons.
Do you also have sons who love cars, trucks and trains? Are they also around the same age as my boys? Feel free to download a copy of this transportation-themed alphabet curriculum, which now part of the Hands-On Parent while Earning (H.O.P.E.) Toolkit.
Download this for FREE by signing up to the HOPE Toolkit. Click here.
Hope you enjoy teaching your son/s with this simple alphabet program!
I'm linking this post to the Catholic Bloggers Monthly Link up Blitz for August.