Straight or Curvy?

by Ana on June 26, 2008

This is game you can play with early learners to expose them to some concepts of print…in this case letter shapes (even if they don’t know their letters yet). You’ll need some letter magnets or foam letters that your child can use as manipulatives and some containers (small bins, toy boxes, large cups, baskets, or whatever you have on hand that the letters will fit into).

  1. Put some letters out in front of your child on the floor or table. Ask them some questions about how the letters look: Do these letters look different or do they all look the same? What makes them look different? Do any look alike? What makes these look similar?, etc. You want them to be looking at their shape and size.
  2. Ask your child to pick 2-3 letters to look at more closely. Depending on the letters your child picks, you can talk about how the letters are made up of straight lines, curvy lines, or both. Have your child trace the letters they chose with their finger and talk about whether they are made up of curvy lines (for example: S or C), straight lines (A or T), or both (B or R).
  3. If your child understands and shows interest, you can tell them you’re going to play a game where they have to separate the letters by what kind of lines they have. Have three containers ready, each labeled with a picture of the different lines.
  4. Play along with your child as you place the letters in the correct containers!
  • This game can also be used with older kids who are learning to write their letters to help reinforce what types of lines they should use.

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