10 Easy Ways to Teach Your Toddler the Alphabet

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Learning the alphabet is the first step to reading. There are a lot of different ways to teach toddlers and young kids the alphabet. Today I wanted to share a few of my favorites.

Children learn things differently and at different paces. Some kids will learn the alphabet young while others will learn it in preschool and kindergarten.

I haven’t pushed my kids to learn the alphabet because, in my opinion, the most important learning is through play.

Since both of my kids have shown an interest in learning the letters I gave them the resources to feed their curiosity.

I have used fun worksheets like this (letter v worksheets for preschool) as well as fun hands-on activities.

10 Easy Ways to teach your toddler the Alphabet

10 Fun Ways to Learn the Alphabet

Below are some of my favorite ways to practice and learn the alphabet in a fun and playful way.

These activities can be done for 20 minutes or 5 minutes it just depends on if your toddler/kid likes the activity or not.

#1 The LeapPad

Both of my kids love the LeapPad. It takes a little time but both of them have recently gotten really good at using the LeapPad, they are still figuring out how to play many of the games.

We got the little man a LeapPad to play with for Christmas just before he turned two, I know it was early. He loves playing with it, he points to things and then repeats what the LeapPad says.

At about 2.5 to 3 years old both of our kids really started to figure out the leap pad and enjoy playing with it. Now the kids are older and they still enjoy playing it just with different books.

I love that the leap pad will say what the kids point to along with some information. It’s a great learning tool that seems to magically know what you point at. It’s great for even young kids to enjoy.

Right now we have the Alphabet, Numbers, and Animals books. They are at different levels but they are the topics that the little man is interested in.

#2 Alphabet Bus

This is probably one of my favorite ways for my toddlers to become familiar with the alphabet. It’s a fun toy for babies all the way through toddlers and even young kids.

The Alphabet Bus has a big bus shaped magnet that needs batteries and then individual magnets for each letter.

The letter magnets can fit inside the bus and when pushed the bus says the letter name and sings a little song. The bus also sings the alphabet song and the wheels on the bus.

This bus is a great way to keep my kids entertained while I’m working in the kitchen. If your toddler is interested in numbers there is a similar product for counting.

#3 Puzzles

The chunky wooden alphabet puzzles are fun for kids to do. Just doing the puzzle exposes your toddler to what the letters look like and how they need to be positioned. Many of these puzzles have pictures on the puzzle board of something that starts with the letter that goes in that spot.

For extra learning, it’s easy for parents to be involved with puzzle time by simply asking what the letter is or what sound it makes.

My little guy loves it when I take all of the puzzle pieces and hand them to him one by one asking what letter each piece is. He also thinks it’s really funny to intentionally put the pieces upside down and say “oh no, where does it go?”

Check my Guide to Toddler Puzzles for more fun puzzle ideas. 

#4 Reading

Both Jared and I try to read to the kids every day. This encourages their love of reading and is another way for the alphabet to be a part of the kid’s day.

Reading also exposes kids to how the alphabet works together to make stories and how all of the sounds go together.

Reading to kids from a young age helps them with their vocabulary and I believe it helps them want to read as they get older.

#5 Alphabet Coloring and Crafts

This is not something I do all of the time since printing coloring pages and planning crafts takes time. But the little man loves it when we do crafts or coloring involving letters and numbers.

Pinterest is full of free alphabet coloring pages and craft ideas. I try to do something like this a couple of times a month. Sometimes we do it more often, other times less.

#6 ABC Mouse

Abcmouse.com is a program that many people use as a kindergarten program. It can be used on a computer or as an app on tablets and phones.

Last year we started using abcmouse.com and both of my kids love it. The little man asks to play it all the time. I don’t let him play it as often as he would like but when he does play it he has no idea how much he is learning.

I try to save abcmouse.com as a fun activity for my kids when we are in the car or when we are at the store. They will both sit in the cart and play the little learning games while I run around the store and grab everything we need.

#7 Keyboards

This one may seem a little random but the kids love playing with the computer keyboard. They love to push each letter and tell me what they are writing.

Somedays I’m crazy and let the kids get on the computer and type. This is my son’s all-time favorite activity. He loves seeing the letters he pushes show up on the screen. He has written many word documents and he has even sent a few emails to grandma and grandpa.

*Side note:  If you let them type on the computer be sure to stay with them or they might end up deleting things and changing settings you had no idea existed. (Yes I am speaking from experience!)

#8 Window Stickers

Alphabet window stickers are a fun way to write messages and play while learning. The dollar store often has fun holiday messages that are individual gelly letters that stick to the window or you can make your own window clings with puff paint.

*Another fun way to use the windows to learn is by getting an expo marker and writing the alphabet, numbers, or anything else on the glass and having your toddler erase it letter by letter or, number by number, etc.

#9 Finding Letters in Surroundings

When we are driving or out for a walk I often ask the little man what he can see. Often he points out different letters from signs.

He also notices letters in everyday things. He has pointed out that cups, crackers, and cookies are circles like “O”. Sticks are “L’s” and that Skittles have an “s”.

#10 Movies

I try to limit the amount of screen time my kids get but I let them watch a show almost every day. Usually in the afternoon for quiet time, I let them watch a show so I can get a few things done.

When I use the TV for a distraction I typically turn on a learning show that lasts about 20 minutes and then I will let the kids pick a show to watch.

On the Roku Channel, you can watch a ton of LeapFrog movies for free. My kids really like the Phonics Farm and Number Land shows and the letter factory is an awesome place to start for letter identification and sounds.

Alphabet Blocks

#11 Alphabet Blocks

The kids love building with blocks so we took some of the Lego Duplo blocks and wrote the capital letter and lower case letter on some of the 2 piece blocks and wrote each letter on the single-piece blocks.

The kids have had a lot of fun finding the matching letters and using the letter blocks to build towers.

#12 Sensory Bags

Another fun idea is to make sensory bags for each letter like using popcorn for the letter “P”.

Here is a guide on how to make sensory bags for babies and toddlers with some fun ideas.

Final Thoughts

These are just a few of the learning activities I try to include in our days. I don’t want my toddlers to have a lot of sit-down lessons right now, but I do want them to learn through playing and fun little interactive activities.

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11 thoughts on “10 Easy Ways to Teach Your Toddler the Alphabet”

    1. LeapFrog Products are Amazing! We got the little man the LeapPad to take on a 5-hour flight and it was amazing. Plug in earphones and they are entertained for a good chunk of time. Especially if you have a few different books.

  1. My older son learned the alphabet from reading books, He adores Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, and he picked up the alphabet from reading the book, over and over and over… I can quote is from memory now…

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