Top 5 Ways to Teach Your Child to Spell Her Name

Posted by

Top 5 Ways to Teach Your Child to Spell Her Name

There is no word quite as special to a child as her own name.  So it’s no wonder that many teachers (including me) use a child’s name to introduce the concept of what a letter is, how letters group together to make words, and how a child can use letters to spell.  Although there are hundreds of activities that teach these important ideas, my five favorites are:

Confetti Letters

 

Use a white crayon to write the first letter in your child’s name on a black piece of paper.  Cut a pile of small, colorful squares of paper.  Ask her to use a glue stick and attach them to the letter.  I love the way this looks when it is finished and creating a fancy letter is a great way to explain that the first letter in her name is special and, consequently, is the only letter that uses a capital.

 

First Letter Scavenger Hunt

 

Give your child a bag and ask her to fill it with items from around the house that start with the same letter as her name.  For instance, if your child’s name was Madeline, her bag might say, “Madeline’s bag of Mm” and she would wander around the house collecting Matchbox cars, magazines, and other M-things.

 

Sing a Personalized Song

 

Create a song your child can use to remember the spelling of her name.  My oldest son has five letters in his name so we changed the words to the popular song “BINGO” and spell his name instead.  For ideas, click the video link (right) that corresponds to the number of letters in your child’s name.

 

Build It with Blocks

 

Build her name with blocks.  Dig into your child’s bin of Legos or Mega Blocks and pull out as many blocks as there are letters in her name.  For the example (left) I chose five blocks because the name “Peter” has five letters.   Cut labels to fit nicely onto the side of each block and write one letter of your child’s name on each.  I like to write vowels (A, E, I, O and U) in one color and consonants (all of the other letters in the alphabet) in another color so that I can talk about vowels and consonants later.  

 

Now comes the fun. Write down your child’s name on a piece of paper and have her practice “building it” in the correct order.   Mix up the letters and have her unscramble them.   Sing your child’s name song and have her stick the blocks together as she sings it.   Count the number of letters in her name.   Hide one of the letters and have her figure out which letter is missing. There are so many possibilities.

 

Rainbow Writing

 

Neatly write down your child’s name on a blank piece of paper.  (Feel free to print it out from a computer if you’d prefer.)  Give her six crayons or markers: red, orange, yellow, green, blue, and purple.  Ask her to trace over the letters in her name using each of the colors.  First, she will trace her name with the red crayon.  Then she will use orange, etc.  When she is finished, she will have created a name rainbow.

 

Find More

 

For more fun name practice, try our Mitten Name Sort and check out our Name Game Pinterest board.

Disclosure: Playdough to Plato is a participating member in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program.

Pin It!

5 Clever Ways to Teach Kids to Write Their Name

About Malia Hollowell

Malia is a National Board Certified elementary teacher turned stay at home mama to three young kids {4, 2.5 and 5 months}. She earned her Bachelor’s and Master’s in Education {go Stanford!} and spent seven years teaching in a classroom. Since starting Playdough to Plato in 2012, her ideas have been featured in Parenting Magazine, Pinterest's Top Educational Pins and Kiwi Crate.

17 Comments

  1. Great ideas! I especially love the one with the blocks, since I first want to teach how to “say” the letters, then we’ll work on writing them next. Thanks for sharing

  2. You’re welcome, Kim! And thank you for commenting. :)

  3. loved all the ideas will do them with my Jumanah
    thank you for sharing

  4. I’m thrilled to hear that, Abir! Let me know how they go. :)

  5. I am teaching kindergarten for the first time this fall. i am looking for name games that i can do as a whole class during rug time. Any suggestions? THANKS

  6. Hi Beth! Congratulations on becoming a kindergarten teacher.

    I actually used several of the activities in this post during whole group instruction. Each day, I focused on the name of one student in class (I’ll call him the “student of the day”) and spent 15-20 minutes completing the following routine:

    1. Sing the personalized name jingle that teaches the spelling of the child’s name. (I use the tunes linked in the sidebar of this post.)

    2. Use magnetic letters to spell the child’s name on the white board as the entire class sings the jingle several times through.

    3. Invite another child in class to come up and scramble the letters while the “student of the day” closes his eyes. After the letters are mixed up, the “student of the day” opens his eyes and unscrambles them. The class checks his spelling by singing the jingle again.

    4. Invite each child in the class to draw a picture of the “student of the day” on a blank piece of paper and label the picture with his name. (Before the whole group activity began, I would have placed 2-3 index cards on each table labeled with the “student of the day’s” name so that students who needed a visual reminder of the spelling could find it easily.)

    Later in the day, we would spend 5 minutes writing a list of things the “student of the day” loves so that students could see his name again. For example, the list might say,

    Steven loves dogs. (I would draw a picture of a dog next to the sentence.)

    Steven loves pizza. (I would draw a pizza.)

    Etc.

    I hope that helps and congratulations again!

    Malia

  7. My son has been spelling his name (verbally) since before he was two. He is almost four and attends preschool five days a week. Now it seem that he knows most of his letters visually, but several of the ones he does not know are in his name and he is unable to recall the verbal spelling of his name any more. Is this common and how do we go about “correcting” this backward movement? Any suggestions are appreciated.

  8. Hi Shannon! Without meeting your son in person and completing a full assessment, it’s hard to know what is causing the backward movement. That said, the behavior is not necessarily cause for concern. Some children take steps back before making huge developmental leaps forward. For example, many of my kindergarteners would be able to write alphabet letters correctly for months and then, one day out of the blue, they would start reversing them. The habit would last a few weeks and then the kids would magically flip them back to normal. Brains do mysterious things sometimes.

    If you are worried, I encourage you to talk with your son’s teacher about the behavior. Hopefully, having seen your boy in action, the teacher will be able to give you insight into what’s going on.

    Please let me know if I can help further!

    Malia

  9. This website was very helpful! I am in the process of teaching my class of three and four year old’s how to spell their names, and I think the block idea was perfect! Thanks so much.

  10. My pleasure, Markisha! I’m so happy to hear that the 5 name activities were helpful.

  11. For latest information you have to pay a quick visit internet
    and on web I found this web site as a best site for most
    up-to-date updates.

  12. hi those ideas are great!
    they will help a lot with my daughter Emily!
    i also have a suggestion-
    i taught my daughter Sophie (now 11 years of age) to spell her name with all kinds of creative ways like:

    S- a snake
    O-an orange
    P- a half eaten lollipop
    h-a chair on its side
    i- a line with a dot
    e- a mouse

    thanks once again

  13. Excellent pieces. Keep writing such kind of info on your
    site. Im really impressed by your site.
    Hi there, You’ve done a great job. I will certainly digg it and individually recommend to my friends. I’m
    sure they will be benefited from this website.

  14. Yet another impressive post. These are things that I can actually do! I unfortunately do not have the day at home with my little guy, so sometimes I feel so rushed and like I am not teaching him anything. This post and the “left from right” post are do-able for me!

    I hope that doesn’t make me sound like a bad mom, haha, sometimes we just have to live life on life’s terms ;)

  15. Thanks for your personal marvelous posting! I truly enjoyed reading it, you can be a great author.I will make certain to bookmark your blog and definitely will come back
    at some point. I want to encourage continue your great posts, have a nice afternoon!

  16. If there is any sickness or respiratory issues, it can grow mold north wales in many places, especially in the hotter timesof
    theyear.

  17. You’re so interesting! I do not believe I’ve read something like that before.
    So wonderful to discover someone with some original thoughts on this issue.
    Seriously.. thank you for starting this up. This web site is one thing that is required
    on the web, someone with a bit of originality!

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Teach Your Child to Read from A to Z | Playdough To Plato - [...] plenty of name activities I’ve come across over the years but I outline my top five in the post …
  2. Weekly Kids’ Co-op: Inspiring Educators | Lessons Learnt Journal - [...] Fun Ways to Teach Your Child How to Spell Her Name by Playdough to Plato [...]
  3. Day 1 – Welcome Back | 4chicksplayschool - [...] had this block activity ready to go as a back up and was much more successful.  I found this …
  4. The ABCs of Early Literacy - Playdough To Plato - […] There is no word quite as special to a child as her own name.  So it’s no wonder that …
  5. 100+ Activities for Preschoolers - Playdough To Plato - […] Top 5 Ways to Teach Your Child How to Spell Her Name by Playdough to Plato […]
  6. Mitten Sort: A Name Game - Playdough To Plato - […] old and I have been playing games with the letters of his name for quite awhile now. I taught …
  7. Class Three : Wrapping Up Pre-Reading Skills - Playdough To Plato - […] Top 5 Ways to Teach  Your Child to Spell Her Name {Playdough to Plato} […]
  8. Guest Mama: Your Child's Name from Playdough to Plato | Boy Mama Teacher Mama - […] name so we changed the words to the popular song “BINGO” and spell his name instead. For ideas, visit …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>