Short description of the topic
With this activity, children explore the world of letters that surround us on every step. The goal is to find as many letters as possible and photograph them.
- Linguistic competences: fostering emerging literacy
- Visual competence: observation, visual perception
- Digital and media competence: fostering skills in photography and basic computer skills
- Critical thinking: observing and evaluating the environment
5 years and up
- Individual work
- Photos of Walker Evans
(.pdf 3.02 MB)
Description of the activity (step by step)
Present to children a couple of photographs of Walker Evans. What do all the photos have in common? Children might notice that they are old, black and white, people are dressed unusually for today’s standards, etc. They will probably also notice that there are a lot of letters in the photographs. Explain that the photos were taken a long time ago in the United States. Ask them if they think that on our streets, today, there are a lot of letters to be found as well. Where and why? Tell them that you will be making a photo-safari in search of letters. Every child needs to find as many letters as possible.
Go for a walk around the neighborhood and look for letters. Allow each child to take photos of different letters. Ideally, they can try to make close-ups of letters filling most of the photograph with the letter but you can always cut the letters out later. If necessary, make children aware of all the different places where they can find letters: advertising, nameplates, register plates, bus stations, traffic signs, etc.
When you get back to the kindergarten, look through the photos together on the computer, and discuss them:
Which letters do you know?
How many letters did you find?
Can you try and select letters to write your name?
Let each child select the letters for their name with your help if necessary. Print them out.
The children then cut the letters out and glue them on a paper to write their names.
Variations and additional ideas
You can make the photo safari inside the kindergarten. There are plenty of letters to be found.
You can also look for letters in nature. A tree might be shaped like a V, some round object may stand for an O, etc. You could also create the letters with twigs or write them down with chalk. Or you could combine all of the approaches for extra colorful name writings.
You can make an alphabet snake together and hang it in the playroom.
You could do the same kind of activity with numbers or colors.
You can let the children get creative with letters in an editing program, such as Tux Paint. Let them give them wings, eyes, hair, and make funny writings together!