Teaching Alphabets

I realized Aakash liked Alphabets, even before he could be speak and was formally diagnosed with Autism. He would stare at the alphabets curiously in the name boards outside shops, advertisement banners, posters and neon lights.

Also in learning anything, he easily learnt it when Matching was used. So when I prepare materials for teaching, I always ensure there is a matching kind of activity. And also my son learnt things by rote and using his visual strength. I keep that in mind when preparing materials for him.
This article is about how I taught him alphabets using his strength of matching.

The fig.1 shows  pictures of alphabets on the left side and a set of matching alphabet cards on the right side.  when we started this activity, he was a non verbal child. So when he matched the alphabets, I used to give him the sound for each alphabet.

After a lot of practice, he got the habit of calling out the alphabets while matching. If he struggled to say a alphabet, I used to prompt him to say. And also if he finds it difficult to find a alphabet, I used to physically prompt him to match.

Because my son was a rote learner and he may recognize and recite alphabets only in an order, I did another activity(in figure 2) and made him to match alphabets in random order.

Also for figure 1 and figure 2, I did variations with lower case letters as well.

Fig. 3

 The above wooden puzzle in figure 3 is one of several variations I give him for alphabets.

                                                    Fig 4                                            Fig 5
The  Fig 4 and Fig fig 5 are the screenshots of two ipad Apps. These two are paid Apps. The My  First Puzzles : Alphabet is Rs.120 and the First Letters and Phonics App is Rs.60 when I checked and it is worth the money. The second App is very nice app which has the option of matching the Upper case letter with the Lower case Letter.

The Apps can be downloaded from the following links

                  Fig (6)                                                                                                     Fig (7)
I believe by giving lots of variation in teaching a concept keeps the child engaged in stress free way. The exercise mentioned in Fig (6) and (7) gave him a good break.

As a Visual leaner Aakash likes book too, so I gave him lots of books to dive into Alphabets. Because of books the below activity became easy for him.


Below is a short video clipping of how Aakash uses all the above materials to learn Alphabets.


How I have prepared the Materials in this article:
        * All were prepared in Microsoft Word.
        * I take two copies of the prepared documents.
        * Laminate both the copies.
        * Cut one of the copies into pieces for the matching card.
        * Depending on the number of pages some time I spiral bind it too.        

Hope my experience helps in framing activities for your kids based on their strengths and needs.

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