Literacy Activities

The following activities can be used to help increase literacy skills in Pre-K students.


  • Reading to your preschooler is the best way to prepare them for reading.
  • Read a favorite story together, and ask your child to give a signal each time he hears a particular word. For example, "Clap your hands when you hear me say the word bear."
  • Invite your preschooler to read to you, if he or she is a pre-reader they will often interpret his or her own story by using illustrations and their imagination this is okay
  • Ask them "who", "what", "where", and "why" questions during reading time
  • Practice reading environmental print - street signs, store names, favorite foods.
  • Discuss books with your child after reading them together. Ask "How" & "Why" questions to extend learning.
For suggestions on books to choose view our collection of books for literacy

Higher Order Thinking

Shaving Cream

  • Spread shaving cream on the table or on a tray and have your preschooler practice writing letters with their finger. An advantage to using shaving cream during clean up, just rub the shaving cream on the table until it disappears and it cleans the table at the same time.


  • Play games like "Simon Says". Give one-step commands and then progress to two or three-step commands. "Simon says turn around, clap your hands, and touch your toes."


  • Go outside and identify sounds you hear.
  • Point out words and letters in your environment. Ask your child to name letters and sounds.
  • Create silly stories together while riding in the car or waiting at a restaurant.


  • Talk to your child while engaged in activities like cooking or chores. Explain what you are doing & the tools you are using.
  • Discuss the day's events
  • Give your child lots of opportunities to engage in conversation with adults.
  • Let them order in a restaurant or answer the telephone using phrases you have rehearsed ahead of time.


  • Cut out logos from the paper or store ads. Paste them on paper, or put them in an album to make a book for your child to read.
  • Use newspapers & magazines for letter find activities. Have children find and circle the letters in their names.


  • Sing nursery rhymes and children's songs.
  • Teach your child some hand clapping chants or jump rope rhymes you remember from childhood.


  • Invite you child to write when you write.
  • Let your child write on old calendars, order forms, check registers, or grocery lists.
  • Provide a "grown-up" pen or pencil.

Play Dough Letters

  • Take play dough help your preschooler roll it out like a snake and then form letters with it asking them to identify the letter they made. You can make a letter and have them identify it.

Name Spelling Game

Using letter flash cards, teach your preschool child to spell his or her name.


  • Index cards
  • Pen or marker


  1. Print each letter in your child's name on an index card.
  2. Lay them out to spell your child's name.
  3. Mix them up and have her try to put them back in the proper order.

Word Recognition

Once your child can recognize the letters of the alphabet, you may want to start practicing simple word recognition.


  • Index cards
  • Pen or marker
  • Old magazines
  • Photographs (optional)
  • Scissors
  • Glue


  1. On one set of index cards, write some simple words, such as cat, dog, or bird.
  2. On another set, draw or cut out magazine pictures that illustrate the words you have chosen.
  3. Lay all the cards on the table, face up, and have your child match each word to the corresponding picture.
  4. Try name recognition by using photographs of your child, siblings, friends, relatives, and so on.
  5. Write the name of each person on an index card and have your child match the photo to the appropriate name.

Find the Letters

Using the pre-made circles, teach your preschool letter identification.


  • Paper
  • Scissors
  • Pen or marker
  • 3 colored plastic cups or any other type of cup or mug


  1. Cut out circles of paper small enough to hide beneath a cup or a mug.
  2. Write different letters on each circle. Place three cups or mugs on the table and hide a paper circle under only one of them.
  3. Have your child guess where the letter is and identify the letter when she finds it.
  4. Take turns hiding the circles.

Alphabet Book

This is a long-term project that is great for rainy afternoons.


  • Spiral bound notebook or loose sheets of paper
  • Crayons or markers
  • Old magazines
  • Scissors
  • Glue
  • Stapler
  • Photos(optional)


  1. Help your child print a letter of the alphabet on each page of a spiral bound notebook, or use loose sheets of plain or colored paper.
  2. If using loose paper you may want to staple them together in the form of a book.
  3. Your preschool can draw a picture of something that begins with that letter, cut pictures from old magazines and glue them onto each page, or use photographs.