Environmental print activities are an easy way to introduce print concepts and early reading skills in preschool. In fact, environmental print for preschool can be a great jumping-off point for beginning reading, learning words, and discovering letter sounds too.
My new environmental print alphabet and printable activities can make it easy to learn about letters and print concepts in the classroom. Plus, I’ve got lots of fun hands-on environmental print activity ideas you can do at home or in your preschool classroom this year. Keep reading to discover how you can take advantage of environmental print with your early learners.
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What Is Environmental Print?
Environmental print is the print of everyday life. We use the term environmental print to cover all the print we see each day on signs, logos, and labels. A stop sign on the street corner and the golden arches of Mcdonald’s are both examples of environmental print.
Preschoolers see environmental print every day and quickly learn to identify a wide variety of things by their logos and signs. For example, which preschooler doesn’t know the symbol for McDonald’s or how to spell Blippi? Since environmental print is something our preschoolers see and identify regularly, it’s an easy way to begin teaching them about letters and letter sounds.
Why Is Environmental Print Important for Preschool?
Using environmental print activities in your preschool classroom or homeschool lesson plans is a great way to encourage your kids to interact with letters, sounds, and words in a way that’s familiar to them. Plus, environmental print for preschool is fun and easy for teachers too!
Environmental print is also a great way to introduce print concepts to preschoolers and help build the print awareness they’ll need to begin reading independently in the future. Understanding print concepts includes knowledge of the alphabet. This is where environmental print activities can really shine!
Since our preschoolers see environmental print every day, it’s a great way to begin introducing the alphabet. They’re already familiar with the letters on certain signs and labels, so why not use them to teach all 26 letters of the alphabet? Keep reading to get the scoop on how I use all kinds of activities and printables featuring environmental print for preschool at home and in the classroom.
How I Use Environmental Print In The Classroom
I love using environmental print in the classroom to help build print awareness and teach early reading skills. Environmental print alphabet activities make it easy to help preschool learners master letters and the letter sounds too. Our students see these letters on a daily basis and many of them have memorized the names of the companies and words to which they are attached.
If you’re teaching the letter J, wouldn’t it be easy to use JIF peanut butter? Many kids are already familiar with the label and see it regularly so using the J in JIF to learn about the letter J makes a lot of sense.
Take this environmental print anchor chart activity for example. It focuses on simple sight words and common environmental print that your students are likely to already know. Plus it’s a great name recognition activity as well!
You can post my environmental print alphabet in your classroom to give kids extra exposure and help them identify and remember the letters they see around them each day. It’s a great way to help preschoolers recognize that written words have meaning and that reading is a skill they want to pursue.
My ABCs of Environmental Print Alphabet printables make it easy to master letters with signs and labels your kids are already familiar with. Get ready to master the ABCs with Amazon, Burger King, and Crest. Keep reading to discover all my favorite environmental print activities for preschoolers.
My Favorite Environmental Print Activities and Printables
Environmental print activities make learning the alphabet with your preschoolers easy and fun for even the most reluctant learners. Check out some of my favorite environmental print alphabet activities below.
Environmental Print Easy Reader
My environmental print easy reader books are printable and no-prep for teachers. They’re easy to complete with your preschoolers in the classroom. Then, send them home for extra practice and alphabet learning.
First, print and assemble these books as a classroom activity. Your preschoolers will get lots of practice building fine motor skills as they cut and assemble each book. Plus, putting the pages in alphabetical order will help your preschool learners practice sequencing and memorizing the alphabet.
Then, send them home for preschoolers to add their favorite environmental print labels and images or encourage students to bring in labels to create in class. In a homeschool setting, you can complete this part of the activity together by searching for the images online to print and glue to each page or raid the recycling bin for cereal boxes and labels you can use.
Preschoolers can share these environmental print alphabet easy readers with friends and family to practice memorizing letters, sight words, and letter sounds in a way that’s fun and interactive. It’s an easy activity that you can use for extra practice all year long.
Environmental Print Class Book
Another fun activity idea for preschoolers to learn with environmental print in the classroom is to create an environmental print class book. This activity does require extra prep for teachers, but it’s totally worth it to help your preschoolers master environmental print in a fun new way.
Before you can build environmental print class books or binders, you’ll need to gather supplies in the form of labels and magazine ads you can attach to each page in your binder.
This would be a great family project so encourage your students to bring in labels from home. I’ve got a free letter to parents you can grab HERE to help get you started.
Once you have the labels, cut them out to fit in the book or binder. You could punch holes in the side like I did, or even place the labels inside of clear sheet protectors. In the end, your kids will have an environmental print book they can flip through as they practice reading this school year.
Bingo Boards with Environmental Print
Learning with environmental print for preschool can be a fun experience! Play a game of environmental print bingo with your students to see just how much fun you can have as you learn the alphabet together this year.
Hands-On Environmental Print for Preschool
Hands-on learning activities encourage preschoolers to multi-task as they practice listening, speaking, touching, and using the 5 senses to explore their environment. Activities with environmental print for preschool helps your kids by exposing them to the same icons and letters they see in daily life in the classroom.
Preschoolers can use problem-solving strategies to learn as they interact, making mistakes and testing new solutions along the way. Discover some of my favorite hands-on activities with environmental print for preschool below.
Seek-and-Find with Environmental Print
One of my favorite environmental print activities involves getting out in the community with your preschoolers. If you must, this activity can be done in the classroom too. However, it works best in a community setting.
First, grab my environmental print alphabet pages. Then, use them as a checklist while you search for the labels and logos pictured with each letter around your town. This is a great carschooling activity for homeschoolers.
If you’re looking for an activity involving environmental print in the classroom, you can adapt this seek-and-find activity to fit your plans. Just print the environmental labels and logos and put them around the room. You can add them to your centers and have kids get up and move around the room as they search for and check off letters.
Environmental Print Alphabet Checklist
This hands-on environmental print activity is a super fun one for learning on the go. If you have a road trip or field trip drive coming up, you’ll definitely want to grab this activity idea for your preschoolers.
Use my environmental print alphabet page to encourage your preschoolers to check off each logo or label as they see them. This is a great way to keep boredom at bay on long trips in the car while you run errands or during travel. Plus, it helps kids learn the alphabet in a fun new way.
Alphabet Print Matching Sensory Bin
Finally, you can use environmental print to create a sensory bin. I love sensory bin activities because they encourage early learners to explore and learn with all five senses. It’s an excellent way to help build mind-body connections and encourage reluctant learners to get engaged with the lesson.
Check out my ideas about creating sensory bins your preschool learners will love in my DIY Preschool Sensory Bins article. For this environmental print sensory bin, you’ll need to grab some alphabet letters and print my environmental print alphabet cards.
Here are some alphabet letters you can use to fill your sensory bin that we really like:
For even more sensory learning fun, consider mixing a few different textures for your preschoolers. Mixing textures and sizes of the letters in your bin adds another layer to the sensory experience and helps kids really think about each alphabet letter they discover.
Preschoolers will match the letters to the environmental print cards. Children who can write letters can practice writing the letters they find on their own paper for more literacy and handwriting practice too.
How will you use environmental print activities in your preschool classroom or homeschool lessons this year? I’d love to read all about your great ideas in the comment section and try them with my preschoolers too.