With a new kindergartner, letter recognition is a big thing in our house right now. My daughter knows most of her letters, but we're trying to get in lots of practice for reinforcement because she's eager to learn to read. Reviewing a skill like letter recognition can start to seem tedious sometimes (especially for mom!), so try to make it relaxed and enjoyable for your child. Scaring them away from formal learning experiences is definitely not something you want to do, especially when they're just reaching school age. Here are a few fun ways to work in some extra letter practice around your house.
ABC Bingo: You can make your own bingo cards easily or print them off. Bingo is a great game for younger kids to play with older siblings since there's no real skill involved. Anyone can win! We use letter tiles from alphabet games for our draw pile, but you can use magnets, cards, or make your own.
ABC Find It and Letter Mazes: We have used these printables from 1+1+1=1 and really enjoyed them. For the mazes, you can laminate them and reuse them. I've put them on the fridge and given my daughter magnets to cover the letters with, or print a copy and have your child mark on it or cover the letters with stickers. The ABC Find It cards can be used in a variety of ways. In addition to providing these for free, Carisa has shared lots of ideas for using them over on her blog!
Mouthwash Time: I've shared before about our quick review times while getting ready for bed each night. Instead of numbers, use a paper that has several different letters you're working on. Say the letter and have your child point to it, or give your child a sound and have them find the corresponding letter.
ABC Book: As your child begins to learn the sounds the letters make, help them make their own ABC book. Simply write a letter on each page and then have your child hunt in magazines (or print pictures from the computer for them to choose from) for pictures that go along with each letter.
Magnet Matching: A super easy and super quick way to practice matching uppercase and lowercase letters is to use letter magnets. Choose several uppercase letters and then give your child the corresponding lowercase letters to match. If you want to make it more difficult, add in some extra lowercase letters.
No matter how you practice them, remember to make it a positive experience. Five year olds don't need a ton of drill practice. Also, be patient. Every child is going to pick up these things at his or her own pace. Stay positive and be encouraging! Happy learning!