Home » Learning Activities » My Favorite Prewriting Activities for Preschool

My Favorite Prewriting Activities for Preschool

Please take a moment and share this post!

Are you looking for prewriting activities for preschool students? Then you’re in the right place! I’ve got a fun way to build fine motor skills, develop hand-eye coordination, and get ready for writing this school year!

Prewriting skills are a big first step for preschool students learning to write letters and master handwriting. From scribbling to drawing shapes to tracing letters, there are lots of important steps for preschoolers to practice as they master prewriting. 

Keep reading to discover some of my favorite hands-on prewriting activities, printable prewriting skills practice, and tools you can use to help your preschoolers practice proper pencil grip too.

Disclosure: As an Amazon Associate, I may earn commissions from purchases made through links in this post at no cost to you.

What Are Pre-Writing Skills and Why Should Your Preschooler Practice Them?

Pre-writing skills are the skills involved in learning to write. Pre-writing skills include holding and using a pencil properly as well as the ability to draw, copy and color.

Parents and teachers can use pre-writing activities to help their young children develop these important early academic skills in the classroom and at home.

prewriting activities for preschool

Introduce your early learners to lines and stroke patterns according to a developmentally appropriate sequence. Toddlers can begin with scribbling in horizontal or vertical patterns. Then, imitate circular shapes.

Preschoolers should be able to draw circle, cross, and square shapes. They should also be practicing tracing lines, drawing horizontal, vertical, and diagonal lines, and practicing proper pencil grip.

Fortunately, there are all kinds of fun ways to practice these important pre-writing activities for preschool.

The Best Way To Build Fine Motor Skills with Prewriting Activities for Preschool

Parents and teachers can use prewriting activities for preschool to help young children build pre-writing skills and develop fine motor skills too. Developing strong fine motor skills in early childhood will help your students to meet pre-writing milestones successfully. 

Prewriting activities are the beginning of helping kids learn to express themselves by putting their ideas into print. You can use hands-on pre-writing activities, tools, and printable pre-writing skills pages to help your preschoolers develop and practice these important early skills.

Fun Tools for Practicing Proper Pencil Grip

One important aspect of helping your preschoolers to develop pre-writing skills is helping them to master the tripod pencil grip. There are so many fun tools for practicing pencil grip! Check out some of my favorites below. 

5 Stage Pencil Grip

This 5 Stage Pencil Grip is a great place to begin practicing how to hold a pencil with your preschoolers because it supports their entire hand and guides them in where to place the pencil from tip to end. Plus, it’s comfortable and supportive for your child’s hand when they’re learning to write.

Owl Pencil Grip

These Owl Pencil Grips are so cute! You can use them to encourage reluctant preschoolers to practice holding their pencils properly. Plus, they’re ergonomic and easy to use.

Triangle Pencil Grip

I love these Triangle Pencil Grips for preschoolers who might just need a little reminder about proper pencil grip. They’re small and it’s easy to add these grips to all your pencils.

The triangle shape is a quick reminder for preschoolers and kindergarteners who already know how to hold a pencil but might need a little help developing hand strength.

Hands-On Letter Formation Activities for Preschoolers

Letter formation is just one piece of the puzzle when it comes to handwriting, but it’s a big one! Pencil grip, where your preschoolers place the pencil when they begin, and pencil strokes are all part of learning to form letters. Mastering pre-writing activities which focus on drawing lines and shapes will help your preschoolers learn to form letters correctly. 

There are all kinds of fun hands-on prewriting activities you can do with your preschool learners to help prepare them for letter formation and practice writing letters when they’re ready. Check out some of my favorites:

Playdough Mats

Playdough is a wonderful tool for helping preschoolers develop fine motor skills, strong finger muscles, and practice letter formation. Plus, it’s a great sensory activity!

prewriting activities for preschool

Check out my Shape Playdough Mats for a fun prewriting activity that will help get your preschoolers ready to practice letter formation while having all kinds of fun this school year!

Scissor Skills

While you’re exploring playdough, break out the safety scissors. Cutting through playdough is a fun way and a bit more of a challenge than just cutting paper. 

Cutting with scissors helps children develop finger control and exercises the muscles they’ll need for writing letters. Plus, it’s a great way for kids to practice creating straight lines or shapes without the intimidation of a pencil. 

Sometimes I like to give my preschoolers a stack of scrap paper or old magazines and let them cut any shapes or figures they want. Other times, a more structured scissor skills activity is fun to do. 

Check out Melissa & Doug’s Scissor Skills Activity Book for fun prewriting activities for preschool students. Then, explore letter formation with my Cut and Paste Alphabet Crafts.

uppercase alphabet crafts for kids

Loose Parts Play

I love the creativity involved in loose parts play. It’s all about setting out loose parts for your preschoolers to explore and interact with at home and in the classroom. Loose parts play doesn’t come with instructions to follow or rules about how the parts can be used. 

Engaging in this kind of hands-on prewriting activity doesn’t just encourage kids to practice small finger movements while creating shapes and lines, it encourages preschool students to explore, think creatively, and problem-solve. 

Sand Tray or Salt Tray

Using a sand or salt tray is a fun Montessori-inspired prewriting activity for preschoolers. All you need to do this hands-on pre-writing skills practice is a shallow tray or container, sand or salt, and a writing utensil for your child to make marks with.

These trays are perfect for multisensory learning and engaging reluctant preschoolers as you teach them about shapes, numbers, letter formation, and all kinds of important early preschool skills.

For a fun twist, spray shaving cream on your preschool student’s desk and let the child practice drawing shapes and forming letters and lines in the cream. It’s a ton of fun and easy to clean up too!

alphabet coloring pages

Don’t miss my Alphabet Coloring Pages, Alphabet Tracing Worksheets, and tips on How to Teach the Alphabet to Preschoolers for more great ideas on practicing letter formation with your students this year. 

Develop Hand-Eye Coordination with Printable Fine Motor Activities and Pre-writing Activities

In addition to hands-on activities like play dough and salt trays, you can explore pre-writing skills and help your preschoolers develop hand-eye coordination with printable pages too. I’ve created lots of fun printable activities to help your preschoolers practice these skills in the classroom and at home.

Here are some of my favorites:

Name Tracing

Learning to trace their own names is an important early step for preschoolers practicing pre-writing and learning letters. Tracing the lines that form the letters in their names can be a fun activity and easy to do with my Editable Name Tracing Pages.

name recognition activities

Don’t forget to check out my Name Recognition Activities for more fun ways for preschoolers to learn these important early skills.

Printable Sensory Bin Letters

One of my favorite pre-writing activities to do in the classroom is to incorporate alphabet letters into my sensory bins. Sensory bins are fun and engaging for kids of all ages, but they’re truly perfect for preschoolers! 

prewriting activities for preschoolers to use in sensory bins

Hide my printable themed alphabet letters in your sensory bins. Then, preschoolers can find the hidden letters and record what they find in sand or a recording sheet. Tracing is a great way for preschoolers to practice pre-writing skills and searching for hidden letters is fun too!

Do you have different ways to practice pre-writing lines and shapes with your preschoolers? Share your favorite ways to build strong index fingers, practice pincer grip, and develop your child’s ability to master handwriting in the comments.

I can’t wait to read them and try a few of your favorite prewriting activities for preschool with my students too!

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *