Alphabet puzzles are great tools for teaching and learning in your home. They are interactive (your child is physically doing something) as opposed to passive (just taking in information), and they’re just plain FUN. Obviously puzzles are meant to be put together, but used separately, the pieces themselves make awesome toys and manipulatives for learning letters and sounds.
I had honestly forgotten how much I LOVE alphabet puzzles. I went on a search for some of my favorites over the years, and ended up getting lost in happy browsing.
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Let’s start off with these two favorite alphabet puzzles that I’ve loved for years.
The Melissa & Doug See-Inside Alphabet Peg Puzzle
This Melissa & Doug See-Inside Alphabet Peg Puzzle is the perfect all purpose alphabet puzzle. The colors are vibrant and the shapes of the letters are clear. The little pegs on the pieces makes them easy to take in and out, and are perfect for little fingers to practice a pincer grasp.
There’s a cute picture under each puzzle piece, so you can use this puzzle to start matching sounds with letters. Simple and classic.
Click on the video below to watch as I share all the reasons that this puzzle is a great choice.
Melissa & Doug Alphabet Sound Puzzle – Wooden Puzzle With Sound Effects
The Melissa & Doug Alphabet Sound Puzzle also has clear, brightly colored uppercase letters. It adds sound, making it a bit more versatile. As each letter piece is popped into place, the puzzle plays a recording of that letter’s name and sound.
Alphabet & Numbers Foam Puzzle
Foam puzzles are great because they offer a different tactile experience than cardboard or wooden puzzles. Foam is easier to cut into precise forms, so the shapes of the letters tend to be more accurate. Because of this, I like to have kids practice letter formation by tracing their index finger along the top surface of each foam letter.
Foam alphabet puzzles are easy to find at your local dollar store, but if you need convenience, here’s this set at Amazon. Of course, I love that it includes both lowercase and uppercase well-shaped letters! (And as a bonus, you get a foam number puzzle, too.)
Melissa & Doug Alphabet Express Jumbo Jigsaw Floor Puzzle
Floor puzzles are fantastic choices for reinforcing the alphabet because they involve physical exercise as kids move around putting the pieces in order. They are also offer valuable opportunities for children to work together cooperatively.
This Melissa & Doug Alphabet Express Jumbo Jigsaw Floor Puzzle features both lowercase and uppercase letters, along with an adorable friendly animal to represent each letter.
The pieces are thick enough that they can stand up on their own on an uncarpeted surface. How cool is that? You could make a ten foot long alphabet train and then scoot it along the floor as if it were chugging down a track. It would also make a great prop for imaginative play, maybe along with blocks to build a train station.
The Learning Journey Match It! – Upper & Lower Case Letters – Self-Correcting Alphabet Matching Puzzle
Alphabet matching puzzles are fun and motivating for kids. They love to find the two or three pieces that belong together for each letter. These next two choices are great for older preschoolers and kindergartners, or any child who is still working on matching letters and sounds.
This Learning Journey Match It! – Upper & Lower Case Letters – Self-Correcting Alphabet Matching Puzzle is awesome because it includes both lowercase and uppercase letters AND a picture to represent the letter. The three pieces for each letter all face up, with no back side.
A great option is to pull out the pieces for just a few letters at a time, for a few minutes at a time. You don’t have to tackle the whole set, but your child feels the satisfaction of a finished puzzle for each letter that you did choose.
Fun-to-Know® Puzzles: Uppercase & Lowercase Alphabet
If your child is an older preschooler or kindergartner and you are starting to work with words, the Fun-to-Know® Puzzles: Uppercase & Lowercase Alphabet is a terrific choice.
There are two puzzle pieces for each letter, printed on both sides. One side matches lowercase and uppercase, and the other side matches a picture with a word. So flexible! You could have your child match a letter to its picture, then flip over the letter to take a look at the word and complete the puzzle.
Remember to offer the pieces for a few letters at a time, to avoid overwhelm and frustration, and build success and keep it fun.
Learning Resources Alphabet Puzzle Cards
These Learning Resources Alphabet Puzzle Cards are different because each letter is a two-piece puzzle by itself. Each one is approximately 5 inches tall and features two or three pictures of items that start with that letter.
You know what I would love to do with these? Mod Podge them together and use them as wall decor in a child’s bedroom. I’d probably buy one set to play with and one set to use as a wall border or to create an alphabet chart at a child-friendly height. They’ve got numbers available, too!
Each of these alphabet puzzles offers different opportunities for your child to explore letters and sounds in a fun, engaging way. Pick one today to liven up and refresh your family’s collection of alphabet toys and games. You may discover that it re-ignites or increases your child’s interest in working with the alphabet.
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