Remember the personalized puzzle sticks I made recently for a few birthday and Christmas presents? I included a set of these alphabet sticks along with them.
I had incorporated Popsicle sticks into several classroom activities in the past, and they inspired me to come up with this activity set. I used fancy colors for my initial creation, thinking they would be a more lively option. However, once they were completed, I decided that plain sticks would be more versatile. Although you can find these wooden wonders at your local dollar store, they're actually a better deal at Amazon.
I labeled the sticks with both capital and lowercase letters along the center and each tip. I did this so that the sticks could be used both vertically and horizontally. I had initially planned for these to only include the alphabet, but decided to throw in some numbers on the other end, to offer more playing opportunities since I had the space. I tried to mix the order of the numbers up a bit, so that they wouldn't correspond much to the order of the letters.
Once the sticks were complete (I let them air out for a few days on our porch, to allow the permanent marker smell to dissipate), I created a card with ideas for how to use them.
Some of these ideas are:
- Put the sticks in alphabetical order (can be done both horizontally and vertically, with just capital or lowercase letters)
- Match upper and lower case letters together
- Have your child find a specific letter
- Match a letter stick to an object beginning (or ending) with that letter
- Turn all the sticks face‐down and play Concentration
- Use the letters on the tips to play a game of Go Fish
- Put them in numerical order
- Have your child find a specific number
- Create fact families
- Build double‐ and triple‐digit numbers
You can download and print the idea card for free here.
Although she's still a bit young to really make use of these, I went ahead an made a set for Gv at the same time. She has already spent quite a bit of time playing with them, so I can't wait to see her enjoy them more fully when she gets a bit older.
Can you think of any other great ideas for this set of craft sticks? I'd love to hear - leave a comment or email me at lisahealy (at) outlook (dot) com.
Updated to add: I just discovered another great use/activity for craft sticks over at Mommy Needs a Coffee Break. I will definitely be creating a set like this in the future!
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