Skip the worksheets when it's time to teach your preschooler letters. Like all of the vowels, the letter E can confuse your preschooler because it has both a long and short sound. Crafts based on the letter E help your preschooler commit the shape and sound to memory while getting creative.
1. Elephant Activities
Elephant-themed crafts work well to reinforce the short E sound with your preschooler. For a simple elephant craft, paint the palm and fingers of your preschooler's hand with gray paint. Her fingers make the elephant's leg, her palm is the body and her thumb is the head and trunk. If you want to incorporate the shape of the E, use a large paper cutout of the letter as the body. Extend the top horizontal line to look like an elephant's trunk. Another option is an elephant mask made from a paper plate. Cut a trunk from construction paper to hang down from the mask.
A paper bag puppet decorated like something that starts with an E is an interactive craft idea your preschooler can play with after she creates it. Ideas for puppets include an elephant, Eskimo, elk, eagle, ewe or emu. Grab art supplies you have on hand, like construction paper, paint, markers, googly eyes and craft feathers, to decorate the bag puppets. As you're making the puppets, talk about the sounds E makes.
A letter E collage forces your preschooler to think about the sound the letter makes. She connects the letter with words that start with E. Using old magazines, cut out pictures of things that start with E. Another option is to go on an E search through the house to find objects that start with the letter, like eggshells or earrings. If the E items you find aren't things you want glued to a collage, take a picture, print them out on your home printer and glue the photos to the collage. Not only do you end up with a piece of themed artwork, the picture works well for reviewing the sound made by the letter E.
4. Decorated Letters
Decorating a letter E reinforces the shape of the letter so your preschooler is able to recognize it in print. For a basic craft project, cut out a giant E from poster board or construction paper. Your preschooler decorates the letter with markers, crayons, paint, stickers or other craft supplies. To emphasize the sound made by the letter E, use eggshells to decorate the cutout. Crush clean eggshells into small pieces that your preschooler glues onto the E cutout. This technique works well around Easter time using the leftover dyed Easter egg shells. A different version is to use wooden craft sticks or larger paint stirring sticks to make a capital E. Glue the sticks together into the E shape before letting your preschooler paint and decorate the shape.
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