Let’s play an uppercase/lowercase letters matching game

Part of learning the alphabet is being able to recognize both the uppercase letters and the corresponding lowercase letters. While children typically learn to identify the uppercase letters first, once they know the names of all 26 uppercase letters, it is time to introduce the lowercase counterparts. And what better way to learn than with an uppercase/lowercase letters matching game!

I love teaching children using games because games make learning fun. With games, children are exposed to concepts and information in an informal and relaxed way. There is no pressure to “get the right answer” since the child will have multiple opportunities to try while playing.

Uppercase/lowercase memory game

The best way to start learning the lowercase letters is to highlight those letters that look like miniature versions of their uppercase counterpart. Instantly, your child will be able to identifying the lowercase counterpart to the uppercase letter he already knows and feel successful. Also, by pulling out these easy-to-learn pairs, a fewer number of letters remain to be learned and the task does not seem as daunting.

I recommend starting to play this memory game with the letter pairs for C, J, K, O, P, S, U, V, X and Z. This gives a child 10 pairs of letter cards to play with at first. To keep the game manageable for your child, consider beginning with only 5 or 7 pairs of cards and work up to using all 10 pairs of easy-to-match letters.

Once your child is comfortable with the game, show him some pairs of letters that, while not identical, are somewhat similar in formation. Some suggestions include: F, L, T, W and Y. Introduce two letter pairs at a time, asking your child to match the uppercase and lowercase letters of each pair, calling out each letter name as he makes the matches. As he learns the pairs of letters, add another pair to the mix. When your child is confident, add these new pairs of cards to the game you were already playing with the existing 10 pairs of easy-to-match letters.

Finally, slowly introduce the remaining letter pairs. You might ask your child to pick the pairs he wants to learn first. Perhaps a certain letter is contained in his name and will be of special interest to him.

You can also use the letter cards to play an open faced matching game. Shuffle the cards and deal out an equal amount to each player. The players then make the matches they have in their hands by placing the pairs of uppercase/lowercase letters side by side and face up on the table. Then players can draw cards from the remaining letters not dealt out and try to make matches with the letters they have in their hand. When all of the cards not dealt out have been picked, the person who made the most matches wins.

Also, try scattering some letter cards around the house in places where the cards are partially in view, hiding one card from each uppercase/lowercase pair of letters. Then. give your child the second card of the pair and send him on a “Letter Hunt” to find the match for each card he holds in his hand. As he finds the matching card, he can bring you the pair so that you can check on his accuracy.

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