There are many different playful ways to help preschool and kindergarten aged children build solid literacy skills. Most of the reading games listed here have support built into them so children can play and enjoy them at any skill level. Both my 3 year old and 5 year old daughters often play together, yet they are consolidating different skills. My three year old is working on letter recognition and sound/symbol correspondence, while my 5 year old is focusing on word building and blending.
With all of the games outlined in this entry, it is important to emphasize both the sound of and the name of the letters with your children as you are playing. It is also helpful if you have your emergent reader double check their work by pointing to each sound individually in a newly created word and then blending the sounds together to re-read the word. This helps the child self-correct if they have made a mistake.
As with all of the playful learning experiences that parents share with their children, participation in the activity should be light hearted and joyful. If at anytime your children become frustrated or uninterested, simply put the activity away for the time being and revisit it at another time.
What are your favorite reading games?
Materials & Resources
• Early Childhood Literacy Research – International Reading Association
• Personalized Bingo Cards
• Alphabet Dominoes – Printable Game
• Rhyming Games – Printables
• Picture Word Matching – Online Reading Game