I had a lot of fun with my post today, finding free printables for phonics activities using wooden dots.
This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Spielgaben. All opinions are honest and my own. This post also contains affiliate links (at no cost to you).
The wooden dots used in this post are from the complete Spielgaben set. The wooden dots are called points in the Spielgaben literature, although I’ve also seen them referred to as dots or small circles.
In case you’re not familiar with Spielgaben toys, they are exceptionally high-quality educational toys designed for ages 3-12.
The Spielgaben complete set comes with over 700 pages of full-color printed learning materials. These printed materials help you as a parent or teacher easily use Spielgaben toys educationally with your child and/or students.
Spielgaben Materials Used in This Post
I loved using the Spielgaben points (wooden dots) to create Montessori-inspired phonics activities. If you’re using Spielgaben toys in the traditional sequence used in Froebel education, these points are the 9th set or “gift” and have activities that can be used for advanced mathematical/geometric concepts. The points can also be used to create objects and designs.
The points are small, which makes them useful for practical life activities that develop fine-motor skills. And their small size makes them appealing to children in the sensitive period for small objects and details. This sensitive period is actually from ages 1½-4, although Spielgaben toys are only recommended for ages 3 and up because of safety considerations with babies and toddlers who put objects in their mouths. Most preschoolers are still drawn to small objects, so they will typically find the wooden dots very inviting. Of course, the dots can be inviting even for adults! (Note: See “Montessori-Inspired Color Activities Using Wooden Toys and Free Printables” for some more activities using the Spielgaben wooden dots.)
The activities I’m sharing today will often add a practical life component to the phonics activities. I’ll link to free printables which will help make the activities simple to prepare yet attractive. I’ll also tell you where I found the materials for my activities.
Letter “a” Phonetic Sound Tray
For this activity, I used one of the Lowercase Do-a-Dot Letters from Shannon’s Tot School. For printing, I set the page sizing to custom size scale 50%. I placed the activities on one of the Multicraft 5-piece wooden trays. Using tweezers isn’t essential, but it’s a fun way to add an extra practical life skill. A strawberry huller or Quick Sticks would work well, too. Of course, using fingers to move the dots is a great fine-motor activity as well.
To make this a phonics activity, I added an inexpensive sandpaper letter. In my “Inexpensive and DIY Sandpaper Letters” post, you’ll find resources for buying or making sandpaper letters along with presentation ideas. I added the “a” objects from the Montessori Services Language Object Starter Set (miniatures for language and reading activities). This isn’t essential, but it’s especially great for young children who love small objects. The miniature objects are wonderful for adding interest and another hands-on way for children to understand phonetic sounds. Pictures could be used instead of objects if you wish.
Initial Sound Tray
For this activity, I used one of the ABC Lowercase Dot pages from 3 Dinosaurs. For printing, I set the page sizing to custom size scale 50%. You could use whichever letters you want and add the correct number of dots. I used a a medium-size tray and added a strawberry huller from Montessori Services to help with fine-motor skills.
When the page is laminated, you could have children who are developmentally ready use an erasable marker to trace the dotted letters.
“Tt is for Turkey” Tray
For this activity, I printed out a “Tt is for Turkey” page from the free printable Thanksgiving Printable Pack from All Our Days. I set the printer page sizing to custom size scale 60%. ” I placed everything on a medium-size tray.
Phonetic Object Box Extension Activity
For this activity, I used the free printable Q-Tip Fine Motor CVC Words from 3 Dinosaurs. I followed the directions at 3 Dinosaurs for reducing the pages to print multiple pages on one piece of paper. I set the printer for 4 per page. I only used 3 of the words for this activity, though. I placed them on one of the Multicraft 5-piece wooden trays.
To add interest, I again used objects from the Montessori Services Language Object Starter Set. I coordinated the activity with the Montessori movable alphabet colors by adding red dots for consonants and blue dots for vowels. You can get ideas for presenting Montessori phonics from my post “DIY Beginning Montessori Phonics for Preschoolers.” (I typically lay activities out on Montessori Services rugs.)
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All My Spielgaben Posts
Many of these include links to free printables! (Click on an image to go to the related blog post. The gallery is ordered according to publication date with my latest post at the top.)
Version 4 of Spielgaben Educational Toys
I highly recommend Spielgaben as an amazing educational material for home or school. Even though the toys aren’t inexpensive, they’re definitely worth the price because of the high quality of materials and number of years your children or students can use them.
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