The new school year is back in full force, with an exciting twist. Little Johnny is now old enough to step up to the plate and learn to spell his name. But, where can you start? Are there any simple but effective ways you can use that will resonate with little Johnny? For starters, let’s pinpoint four top simple ways to help your child spell his name.
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- Computer Typing
I’ve been in the classroom long enough to discern that children are better able to remember and spell their names through writing. The fun part is, technology has made this quite easy for kids to bring the excitement in while learning to spell their names. Simply open a blank page on your computer (with the child supervised) and let them search out the keys. After much acquaintance with the keyboard, have them type out their name, while they pronounce every letter entered.
Tip: Ensure to make the fonts on the monitor big and bold.
- Painting and Highlighting
The recommended method is to use a highlighter to trace their name on a whiteboard, but don’t limit what your child can do. Throw in the occasional painting and make it fun. Use whatever boards you can afford. For the painting exercise, you’ll need a tiny paint brush, drawing paint (kid friendly), and some paper or sketchpad.
Tip: Give the child enough room to get creative. You just might unravel his artistic skills.
- The Good Ole’ Tracing Method and Alphabet Rocks
Yes, yes… You’ve probably heard about that before. That’s because the tracing method has maintained its effectiveness and simplicity throughout the years. Ultimately, you can purchase a book to help your child learn the letters of his name or hand trace on paper. I highly recommend “My First Book of Tracing” which can be sourced on Amazon. A fun alternative is to use alphabet rocks. These are tiny rocks with letters of the alphabet on them.
Tip: Worried about safety? Use magnetic letters instead.
- Repetition… The Mother of Retention
The aforementioned techniques are great and will work wonders for your child, but nothing beats repetition. Get a sketchpad or any colourful paper you can source. In fact, if your child has a special book, have him write is his name (or you can do it) and then allow him to spell it out loud a few times. “Repetition is definitely the mother of retention”. If you want to dodge the books entirely, spell it with him. Say the letters first and have him follow carefully.
Tip: For this exercise, allow the child to take breaks.
Getting your child to spell their name unassisted is a wonderful accomplishment. Even if you face some hiccups along the way, be patient, things will work out. Remember, adding pressure or getting easily annoyed won’t work but will only frustrate the child.