Alphabet sound boxes can be made from any containers you choose (I ordered 50 x Plastic 650ml Microwave Food Takeaway Containers from Amazon). As long as there is one box for each letter of the alphabet. I decided to put in my sandpaper letters, a magnetic letter and any items from the girls’ toy boxes I could find that started with each letter. One important thing to remember is to put in items that start with the phonetic sound (like cat [hard c], not cinnamon [soft c which sounds like ‘s’]) to avoid confusion. The letter ‘x’ can be tricky as words that make the phonetic sound usually end in x not start with it. So I put in a picture of a fox and a box.
Activities to try:
1. Play ‘I spy’ with one box of items until your child understands that you want items that start with the sound you are making. eg. “I spy with my little eye, something that starts with ah ah ah” Your child may pick up the apple. Emphasise the starting sound. “ah ah apple.” Once your child generally understands this concept you can move onto 2 or 3 letters and play ‘I spy’.
2. Another activity you could try is a sorting activity. Choose two boxes with sounds that are not alike (eg letter a and letter s). Put the letters at the top of your mat; mix up the items; choose an item and say what it is, emphasising the beginning sound (eg. ah ah apple); trace the sandpaper ‘a’ and say the sound then place the item under the ‘a’; do the same for each item.
3. A third task would be to use one letter box, trace the sandpaper letter, then draw the letter in a tray of sand or cornmeal. Say the letter’s sound. Say what each item is, emphasising the beginning sound and put the item underneath the sandpaper letter.