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This post has been co-written with Ben Wolfson, a full-time educator and assistant principal in the USA.
The time when preschool students aren’t fascinated by dinosaurs is the time when you should consider leaving the teaching profession. These ancient creatures hold sway over young minds for many reasons. For some, it’s their sheer size, for others it’s their ferocity (especially the meat eaters!) while still more enjoy the challenge of pronouncing the long scientific names. Whatever the reason, you’ll always drive up the engagement and the excitement in the classroom when you start your dinosaur theme, and this dino alphabet match should be at the heart of your literacy centers during this time.
Teaching Letter Identification
In your preschool classroom, students have to master a whole set of skills that will underpin the rest of their literacy journey throughout grade school. This incorporates things like learning sight words and learning vowel sounds, but one of the biggest skills is identifying capital letters and identifying lowercase letters. These letter recognition skills help students to sound out words and to recognize common words around the classroom such as their name and labels for classroom tools. The most common approach is to teach each letter by how frequently it appears in regular text, and this free alphabet printable for preschool gives you all 26 letters in one simple dinosaur worksheet for preschool. It works great as a final challenge once you’ve completed the alphabet, or you can use it as you complete a few letters at a time to practice the skills they’ve been learning.
Preparing Dinosaur Lunch Alphabet Munch
Extension Dino Alphabet Match Activities
The basic concept of this dinosaur worksheet for preschool is simple. You cut up the letter cards, and students spend their center time identifying capital letters and identifying lowercase letters and use the recording sheet as they find matches. Your students will master this free alphabet printable for preschool pretty quickly, so try some of these extension tasks to keep the learning going:
Play a scoot – any time you can introduce movement into your literacy centers, your students will love it. Instead of giving them a pile or bucket of the dinosaur letter cards, hide them around your room (or outside if the weather is nice) and have students practice finding and identifying lowercase letters.
Make it a partner game – you can add a social skills element to your identifying capital letters literacy center. One player picks up a dinosaur letter card and says the letter out loud. The other marks it down on their free alphabet printable for preschool card and then compare answers with their partner.
Practice writing – while this dino alphabet match is predominantly aimed at letter identification, you can turn it into a letter formation practice activity. As students find or pull each dinosaur letter cards, they should practice writing them down three times.