Name Recognition with Children

Written by Regina Rhoda

Learning how to recognize, spell and read our name is one of the most important things we learn as a child.  Learning our name is a catapult for literacy learning in preschool!  As a child, our name is the most important word to us, and learning it leads to other types of learning. A child’s name is one of the first words that they understand and identify with.   They connect their written name with something very meaningful.  This leads to the child wanting to “copy” or scribble their name at first and eventually leads to writing their name in a more conventional way. 

The first stage of a child learning their name is recognizing it. A child initially recognizes the shape of the first letter of their name, will often identify it in other places and will say “My name!”   They may see it in other places such as grocery stores and restaurants, point to it and say, “Look, that’s my name!”  Even if it is just the first letter of their name. 

Below I have samples and a brief description of inexpensive and fun ways to help your child identify and recognize their name.

1- Use a sheet of paper and any paper cups you may have around the house.  You can use up those random cups that you have saved from birthday parties and barbeques.  Write one letter of your child’s name on the bottom of each cup.  Trace circles on a piece of paper using the bottom of the cup as a template.  Now your child has a “letters of my name” activity!

2- This rainbow name activity is art and education all in one!  Write your child’s name on a sheet of paper and then cut up small pieces of brightly colored paper or you could also use those brightly colored office supply stickers that can be found in the office supply area of the local Walmart.  Have your child place stickers or glue colored paper, following the lines of each letter of their name. 

3- This activity combines hopping and name recognition together, making it twice as much fun.  Gather paper plates, again you could use that stash of leftover plates from parties past.  You will need one plate for each letter of their name. Write one letter on each plate.  Place the plates on the floor, in order, then have your child hop from one letter to the next.  While they are hopping have them shout each letter as they land on it, this adds to the fun!

These are just a few fun activities to help your child begin to recognize and identify their name!

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