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Best way to 'teach' 2.5yo alphabet

(8 Posts)
wheresmypaddle Mon 26-Oct-09 13:59:40

My son is 2.5 and has started showing a big interest in letters and words and asking me "what's that letter mummy"?

I don't want to push him but as he is showing an interest I was hoping someone could suggest the best way to start teaching him some letters. I was taught to spell and read using phonetics but I am not sure how I was taught to bridge the gap between the letters of the alphabet and their phonetic sound.

I am not trying to open a debate on whether its right or wrong to teach young children to read before school- just looking for a few tips on these early stages that won't cause him confusion later on.

LilyBolero Mon 26-Oct-09 14:01:09

don't tell him letter names, just the phonic sound. Otherwise he will get confused. Be careful on ones like 'm' which is mmmmmm sound not 'muh'.

Don't worry about a 'way' of teaching him - if he asks, tell him, if not then don't worry about it! but do stick to the phonics.

corblimeymadam Mon 26-Oct-09 14:02:29

Message withdrawn

AMumInScotland Mon 26-Oct-09 14:09:29

If he's interested, then give him the shortest, simplest version of the letter sound - that way, he'll be able to understand how the sounds join up to make words when he is ready. But he won't make that jump for a long while yet, so don't be concerned that he doesn't seem to "get" the idea that "c a t" has anything to do with the word "cat", even if the sounds are right.

And there is no benefit in knowing that they are See Aaye Tee until much later - some children are "taught" the alphabet, but it's no better than a parrot reciting something that has no real meaning.

mumeeee Tue 27-Oct-09 23:35:14

Don't teach him the alphabet just tell him the sounds of the letters when he asks.

Clary Tue 27-Oct-09 23:39:01

yeah second that don't say muh, duh, nuh, cuh etc.

You need to say the sound, mmmmm, nnnn, cccc, ddddd (that one's really hard to write but just try to say the sound of a d and make it longer).

A child in school the other day actually said to me "it's not mmmm, it's muh" - she'd not learnt that in the classroom! but muh uh muh doesn't sound like mum, not in the way that mmmm uuu mmm does.

<rant over>

choosyfloosy Tue 27-Oct-09 23:39:53

I think it's fine to teach letter sounds and letter names. I went down fighting on a thread about this a while ago, but I was unconvinced and still think children learning English do best if they learn both sounds and names. Not simultaneously, necessarily, but if reading Dr Seuss which is based on letter names, just use the letter names (otherwise the rhymes don't work), likewise nothing wrong with learning alphabet songs etc.

I would focus on the letter sounds more than the letter names, but definitely use both as required.

cilantro Wed 28-Oct-09 00:25:58

Agree this is confusing for parents to know what to do for the best. Seems impossible for me to stick to phonics only with so many references to the names in songs, learning websites, etc. So far we've been referring to letters by sounds and I occasionally say their names as well. Lots of times I use the song they use in some P1 classes: The name of the letter is A but we say it AAAA, AAAA for Apple.'

As far as teaching the sounds, I'm trying to figure out the best way to teach vowel sounds, short and long and all the phonic rules of combined letters, like the 'ch' sounds. But so far I've not really focused on it too much (DD only 3.5) only occasionally mentioning.

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