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Encouraging Early Literacy: Fun Reading Activities for Preschoolers

Literacy skills are the building blocks of all other skills and are important for mental, social, and physical growth. Kids learn the basics of reading and writing at home and build on those skills when they start early childhood education. To encourage preschoolers’ literacy and language development, families and caregivers at child care in Olney, MD, should try out some of these fun reading activities with their preschoolers.

Why Early Literacy Skills Are Important

Preschool literacy instruction sets youngsters up for success throughout their lives. All learning is built based on early literacy. These abilities not only help kids become proficient readers and writers but also advance the development of fine motor skills, independence, and language and communication skills.

Fun Reading Activities for Preschoolers

The development of reading skills is not something that happens quickly; nonetheless, many interesting activities may be used to encourage these skills. Below are some enjoyable exercises that can be done at home or in the classroom.


Making things with playdough is a fun way to use different senses and improve fine motor skills. When kids shape, roll, and pat playdough, they strengthen their hand muscles. Strong hands are important for kids because they use them to hold pencils while they write.

Little boy, sitting in a library and reading book

Lego Words

Teaching kids sight words can be facilitated by using Lego building blocks. For instance, put the word “At” on the side of a block that has two spaces left for single blocks to teach the word. Letters “A” and “T” should be written on two separate blocks. The youngster can match the word block’s letters. For optimal effects, make a bunch of blocks with letters and sight words on them, then mix them up so the kid has to choose the correct ones.

Pillow Jumping

Alphabet pillow jumping is a fun way to keep kids moving at home and help them learn to read and write at the same time. Sticky tape, blankets, paper plates, and a pen are what you’ll need. Put a paper plate on each pillow and write a letter on each one. The kids should jump on the pillows that are all over the room. Ask them to say the letter and how it sounds as they jump on each pillow.

Balloon Toss

Leaders at an after school program in Olney, MD, share that another useful literacy exercise for teaching sight words is a balloon toss activity. Write a few sight words on an inflated balloon, leaving lots of space between each word. Call the kids together during circle time and ask them to toss the balloon among themselves. Childrens must read the first sight word they come across once they successfully catch a balloon.


You can scribble at school or home, and it’s a great way to get ready to write. As well as paper and pens, you will need these for this activity. Children should be shown how to hold a crayon or pencil and write with it.

Kick the Alphabet

Learning through movement is a powerful combination of preschool language and literacy programs. It prolongs the attention span of energetic young kids. Using four large paper or plastic cups, write one letter on each to begin the game. Arrange them so there is plenty of room between them in a row. Next, request that a child kick a soccer ball at a specific letter. This helps kids recognize letters.

Two little girls sitting at a desk,  hiding behind books and peeking

Magic Letter Painting

Note cards, watercolor paints, paintbrushes, and white wax pens are what you’ll need. Have the kids use white crayons to write different letters on the note cards. Then, have them paint over the letters with the paintbrush. Watch how they react as the magic letter shows up on each card.

Name Puzzles

Gather bottle caps and other similar things. Each child should get one letter to write their name on the bottle caps. Mix up the bottle caps and ask the child to put them back on the desk in the right order to spell their name.

ABC Train Tracks

You’ll need toy train tracks and circle stickers for this preschool reading project. Put a circle sticker on a certain part of the track and write a letter on each one. Add the letters that go with the sight words you are teaching. On the blackboard, write a list of sight words. Then, ask the kids to make train tracks that make those words.

Scratch and Sniff Names

On a piece of card stock, write the child’s name. Assist the youngster in using the glue to trace over the letters in her name. Some kids are mostly capable of doing this on their own. Since squeezing and manipulating a glue container requires a lot of effort, some will require assistance.

Allow the child to cover the name with flavor-infused gelatin. Urge them to ensure that all of the glue is covered! Assist them in removing the excess gelatin. Let the perfumed name air out. It should continue to smell for some time. To extract more of the aroma, the kids can give it a light scratch if they so choose.

ABC Hunt

As part of your reading time, do an alphabet hunt. You should print out big, bright letters and cut them out so that each piece of paper has one letter. Put them around the classroom near things whose names start with that letter. To give you an idea, put the letter “S” next to some blades.

Start reading a book about the alphabet to the class. Tell a child to hop or skip around the classroom to find the written letter that goes with each letter in the book. One child at a time works best, but ensure every kid has a chance.

Dot Names

Bring the children over and inform them they will use their names to create some dot art. Teach the kids how to squeeze the paints carefully and dab them on the paper if they haven’t used dot paints before.

The youngsters should trace over the penciled names in this project using the dot paints. While some kids want to utilize every color, others only use one. While some children prefer to glide the dot paints along their name, others meticulously dot each letter meticulously. Don’t be too strict when you help them make letters. Just tell them where to start and how to get there.

Final Thoughts

Families and leaders at an Olney child care center can encouraging a love of reading at an early age by including reading and literacy activities into their daily routines. Preschoolers will benefit from a wide range of activities, including some impromptu ones. Fostering early literacy in children can be seamlessly integrated into everyday moments, allowing for natural and unstructured learning opportunities.

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