Numbers and Letters: Your Child Is Learning the Difference

Numbers and Letters: Your Child Is Learning the Difference

When children first become aware of print, they often do not understand the difference between letters and numbers. They both seem to be simply pieces of writing that convey meaning. Between the ages of four and five, though, as children learn what these bits of writing actually stand for, they understand that numbers and letters provide very different kinds of information: numbers represent quantity, while letters form words. In addition to learning the sounds letters stand for and how they work together to form words, they also realize that letters come in uppercase and lowercase forms and that a space is needed to separate individual words. All of these clues point them in the direction of being able to read on their own, a very exciting time!

(Playful Bee is launching our new DIY Preschool from Birth program! Click here to enroll.)

Play Tips:

How can you support your child’s development of this Print Awareness and Concepts skill at this age? It’s as easy as 1-2-3.

  1. Label things. As your child becomes more aware that words have meaning, help him learn some of them by labeling common objects in the house. This will help him associate letters with the names of objects. You can also label his artwork (if that’s okay with him!) or put his name on it.
  2. Make a book. Consider making a scrapbook to help your child become familiar with different common words. The book can be filled with any objects he’s interested in, or you could try making several books on different themes (e.g. dinosaurs, insects, flowers, family members). Find pictures in magazines (or print them out after finding them online), and let your child cut them out and glue them into the scrapbook. Label the different pictures, and review his homemade books often.
  3. Help him write a note. Sending and receiving notes and letters will help your child understand that words have meaning. Perhaps start by having him dictate a letter to another family member. Let him deliver it, and then ask that the person read it aloud to let him hear another person read his words–what an amazing thing! Ask the person to write a note back, and then read the note to your child.

(Playful Bee is launching our new DIY Preschool from Birth program! Click here to enroll.)

Developmental Milestones:

Has your baby achieved the following Print Awareness and Concepts developmental milestones yet? If yes, check off all the skill(s) he has already mastered to date using Playful Bee’s developmental milestones tracker. It’s absolutely FREE and easy to use, just click HERE!

  • Prints some letters or numbers.
  • Understands that numbers are not letters.

Playful Bee

Education Team at Playful Bee
Playful Bee is an e-Preschool that delivers inquiry-based preschool learning from the classroom to your home. Our preschool curriculum was created by our talented team of rock star teachers. With years of hands-on preschool and Kindergarten teaching experience, they've developed a high-quality preschool experience that is convenient-to-use and easy-to-teach by you, grandparents, or your nanny at home.

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