Friday, August 24, 2018


Magnetic letters are inexpensive, durable, and plentiful. Best of all they are REAL (as opposed to a screen)! These activities can be adapted for many different skills and age levels.

Can You Find Bottle? 
Fill a large plastic bottle with salt or sand. Insert magnetic letters and shake. Children shake the bottle and try to identify letters.

*Give them a grid with the alphabet letters. They can color in the letters as they find them in the bottle.

Sand Box Treasure

Hide magnetic letters in your sand table. Children can take a magnet and try to identify letters they “attract.”

*Can they make the sound? Can they think of a word that starts with that sound? Can they write a word that starts with that sound?

*Hide the letters in Styrofoam packing. Add a clipboard, paper, and pencil for children to write the letters as they find them.

Touch and Tell
Place a magnetic letter in a sock. Can children reach in the sock and identify the letter by feeling it?

Letter Password
Place several letters you are working on around your door frame. As children leave the room, ask them to touch a particular letter. (You could also ask them to touch the letter they hear at the beginning of particular word.)

Letter Tin
Place magnetic letters inside a cookie tin. Make three lines with a permanent marker on the inside of the lid. As you call out sounds children place the letters on the lines to make CVC words.
Hint! Place in a center for children to make and write word families.

Building Words
Demonstrate how to build words with magnetic letters using a document camera.

Alphabet Soup
Place magnetic letters in a mixing bowl. Children take a big spoon and scoop out some letters. How many words can they make with their letters? Ask the children to write the words they can make.

What’s My Letter
Have children cup their hands and then distribute a letter to each. Children give clues to help their friends identify their letter.

For example: My letter is made with two straight lines. You hear it at the beginning of turtle and at the end of bat. What’s my letter?

*Number socks for older students and let them record their answers.

Letter Hunt
Hide magnetic letters around the classroom as the children hide their eyes. Explain that they can only find one letter at a time. They have to bring the letter to the teacher, identify it, and then hide the letter again.

Put magnetic letters in a lunch bag. Ask children to reach their hand in the bag and pull out a fistful of letters. How many words can they make with those letters? Ask them to write the words.


These visuals will engage children’s attention in the letters as you sing.

The Letters on the Bus
Draw the shape of a bus on a magnetic board. Place letters in the bus as you sing this song to the tune of “The Wheels on the Bus.”

The A on the bus goes
/a/ /a/ /a/
/a/ /a/ /a/
/a/ /a/ /a/
The Aon the bus goes
/a/ /a/ /a/
On the way to school.

If you have a toy bus, write the letter on an index card and tape it to the bus as you sing.

You could also download this pattern to use with magnetic letters.

Who Let the Letters Out?  (Kiss Your Brain CD)
Place letters in a dog dish or empty box of dog biscuits. Children reach in and pull out one letter at a time as you chant:
Who let the D out?
/d/ /d/ /d/ /d/ /d/