Getting kids up and moving is a sure way to make learning fun. In this low prep but super fun game, I had both my girls balancing and moving across a blue painter's tape line stopping on the letters. Both toddler and preschooler loved hopping, tip toeing, running, and dancing across the line so much they didn't even realize they were learning letters and building their reading skills.
Learning Letters While Playing a Game:
For kids just starting out with letters, this game can be solely a letter identification activity. You walk across the pathway and whenever you come to a letter, you say the name.
For preschoolers who have familiarity with letters and are working on sounds, they can name the letter and letter sound when they get to a letter.
For a challenge, kids can name a word that starts with that letter or even more challenging, spell a word that begins with that letter. That way they're working on beginning sound identification and spelling!
You'll Need Painter's Tape:
Painter's tape is a cheap and versatile tool that seasoned teachers and hands-on parents love to use. I love how easily it comes up after our activities, and it tears so easily so I don't need scissors to use it. I just create a path and go! Get some by clicking my affiliate link below.
Building Gross Motor Skills While Playing:
So often kids are seated for learning time, but my rule of thumb is that kids shouldn't sit for more minutes than twice their age. When we invite kids to play and move to learn, they jump for joy and learning becomes fun, not a task. How would you rather practice your letters? Sitting in a desk or hopping, skipping, and jumping to new skills?
With my kids, we repeated the game multiple times. Each time we used a different method of movement:
You can make it even more challenging by adding a gross motor movement when they reach a letter. At each letter they could stand on one foot while thinking of the letter name or do a jumping jack while saying the letter's name and sound.
Adding multiple modes of movement will help kids build core strength and coordination that better enables them to better navigate their environment. Also exercising while learning is much more fun! And bonus, if more than one child is playing, they are practicing taking turns.
Alternative Way to Play and Learn Letters and Letter Sounds:
Another idea that came up after we were playing was to use vehicles to drive along the pathway and stop at each letter which served as the parking lot. Small figurines can parade along the blue tape, marching to each letter.