Olga spends a good part of every day practicing her lettering. Not because I ask her to, but because she finds letters fascinating. It is so delightful to watch how naturally literacy develops in a child. When she thinks of an interesting word, she asks us to write the letters for her, then she copies them. She can now recognize most capital letters, and she’s starting to understand that every letter has an uppercase and lowercase.
One of the things we’ve done, and I think it encourages her, is to make sure she always has access to paper and writing implements of any kind (even pens, as long as they’re non-toxic). She gets the good stuff that we adults get to use, which in turn sends the message that her writing is just as important as our writing. We also point out words to her around the house, and she constantly searches for letters that she knows when we’re driving around town.
It’s interesting to watch her mistakes, too, because they’re another indication of how much she understands. She knows that “D” is for Daddy and “E” is for Erik, but because Daddy and Erik are one and the same to her, she writes “EAE” instead of “DAD.” The simple mistakes are easy to correct, but I’m happy to see that she’s grasping the concepts.