Using Scrabble tiles for learning is a fun and hands-on way for toddlers and preschoolers to explore letters at home or preschool.
One of my favourite activities, when the hooligans are learning about letters, is to pull out the Scrabble tiles, and set them up on the table along with the wooden Scrabble trays and a few bowls.
Although the kids in my daycare aren’t spelling actual words yet, they do recognize the letters in their names, so they search those out, and line them all up in the right order in their wooden trays.
Identifying the letters, arranging and re-arranging them, and rotating the tiles so the letters are facing the right way all help to prepare your child for early reading.
Scrabble tiles are particularly wonderful as learning tools because of the sensory aspect they lend to an activity. They’re smooth and cool to the touch, and they sound lovely tinkling around in a bowl or clattering on the tabletop.
They’re also great for fine-motor development, as they’re quite tiny for little hands to manipulate.
On this day, I provided several different bowls and trays. Because the tiles are made of wood, I wanted to stick with natural colours and materials for our tools and materials.
The bowls and trays were made from wood and glass, and in addition to the wooden scrabble trays, I set out our wooden checkerboard for the children to arrange their letters on as well.
Doesn’t it look inviting?
FYI: Scrabble tiles are available in sets of 100 on Amazon for a really reasonable price. You can get them here:
Here are some ways that you can use Scrabble Tiles for Learning:
- kids can spell their names on the table top or on their scrabble trays
- older kids can make sight words, and then swap out a letter to form a new word
- you can spell a name with the tiles, and then re-arrange to see how many new words can be made from the name
- kids can organize the scrabble tiles alphabetically, searching for, and then laying out “A, B, C, D…”
- place scrabble tiles on the table, face up, and call out letters for the children to find
- place the ties face down, and play “memory” by flipping over two at a time, trying to make matches
- toddlers can stack the tiles and build towers, or lay them out side-by-side to make letter trains
- sorting/counting – find all the A tiles and count them up etc.
And probably, if your kids and students are like my hooligans, they’ll make up some simple games and challenges of their own.
I hope these ideas have inspired you to use your Scrabble tiles for learning in your home or classroom! I’ll bet your kids would love them!
If you don’t have a spare Scrabble game at home to borrow the tiles from, keep your eyes open at the second-hand shops. You can often find used Scrabble games there. Alternatively, you can visit the Amazon links provided earlier in the post to purchase a set of 100 Scrabble tiles.
For more letter learning activities, check out:
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Jackie is a mom, wife, home daycare provider, and the creative spirit behind Happy Hooligans. She specializes in kids’ crafts and activities, easy recipes, and parenting. In 1997, Jackie stepped out of the corporate world to start a family and to open her own home daycare. She began blogging in 2011, and today, Happy Hooligans inspires more than 2 million parents, caregivers and Early Years Professionals all over the globe.