Here are some name writing practice activities for preschoolers and kindergarteners.
These ideas are hands-on and fun for kids and will encourage them to learn to write their names.
With a classroom full of preschool children, it helps to have students who know how to write their own name on their paper. Different children will learn to write in their own time, but these activities can help the process.
Name Writing Practice Activities for Preschoolers
These name writing practice activities can be used at small group time, at arrival time, or during center time.
It is important when having children practice writing letters of their names, that they are taught the correct letter formation, starting at the top and going to the bottom. You can provide letter formation cards with arrows to show children how to write a letter. You can also practice letter writing in the air to help guide them with the letter formation steps.
Stickers on the First Letter of Your Name
At the beginning of the school year, I like to start out just focusing on the first letter of children’s names. Each child has a page with a large first letter of their name, and the words “A is for Alexis” or “B is for Bentley” or whatever their name is.
The large letter printables on this page work perfectly for this activity. Children can use the small chart stickers to stick on the letter, so that it’s a great fine motor muscle work out as well!
Glitter Paper Names
Glitter paper can be purchased at craft stores in the scrapbook paper section. Cut the sheets into strips, and write each child’s name on a piece of glitter paper using a bold black permanent marker. Have children trace over the letters of their name with their finger as they say each letter. The bumpy glitter paper makes a great sensory activity.
Kinetic Sand Name Writing Practice Activity
Use a plastic tray with kinetic sand for this sensory name writing activity. A two-pound bag of kinetic sand filled this activity tray perfectly. There are two ways to do this activity. The teacher can write the child’s name in the kinetic sand with a sharpened pencil, then have the child trace over the letters with their finger.
Another way to use the kinetic sand when children are ready is to have the child write their name in the sand with a pencil themselves. This is a good tactile activity and they don’t have to worry about mistakes. If they make a mistake, they can smooth out the sand and start over.
Plastic Canvas Names
Having children trace over their name with plastic canvas is a great sensory activity. You can purchase plastic canvas at a craft store inexpensively (less than $1). Type their name onto white paper with a bold black font and place white or clear plastic canvas over it. Have children trace over it with their finger
Later children can use the plastic canvas to practice writing their name with a crayon. You can use the colored plastic canvas for this (if you choose). Use an outline font to type their name on paper and clip the paper to the plastic canvas.
To make these name pages, I used the fonts KG Red Hands and KG Red Hands Outline.
Paint Bag Name Writing Practice Activity
To make paint bags, squirt a little tempera paint in a gallon size freezer ziplock bag (you only need a little paint). Zip the top and seal with duct tape. Flatten out the bag and spread the paint around. Have children practice writing their names on the bag with a Q-tip.
Sand Tray Name Writing Activity
For this activity, be sure to use a larger sand tray than you might use just for letters. An activity tray like the one pictured below works well. Add colored sand to the sand tray and have children write their names with their finger or a small paintbrush. Only use enough sand to cover the bottom — you don’t want too much.
Glitter Glue Names
Print or type names onto card stock paper or construction paper. Have children trace over their names with glitter glue and let dry. Or, have them trace over their names with white glue and sprinkle loose glitter or colored sand on with their fingertips.
Print or type names onto card stock paper or construction paper. Have children trace over their names with glue and stick on sequins. Tip: Have them trace over each letter, one at a time, then add sequins, then trace over the next letter and add sequins.
Print or type their names onto paint paper or card stock paper, and have the children trace over their names with paint.
Dry Erase Name Writing Practice
Dry erase is great for name writing practice because if they mess up a letter, they can just erase and start again. You can make a dry erase mat for each child by printing their name on card stock paper and slipping it into a shop ticket holder. The shop ticket holders work well with dry erase markers.
Play Dough Names
Have children form the letters of their name with play dough or clay. Teach them how to roll out the play dough like a snake and form the letters with it. You can use these Play Dough Letter Formation Mats to show children how to form each letter.
Any Letter Formation Activity or Tactile Writing Tray
Any letter formation activity or tactile writing tray can be used to practice the individual letters of a child’s name. Take one letter at a time. Show children how to make their first letter, then the second letter. You can have children make their letters by driving cars on letter roads, or trains on letter train tracks. They can make their letters with pattern blocks, building bricks, or popsicle sticks. Find these Letter Formation activities here.
You can also use tactile writing trays to practice individual letters of their names.