Play Dough Names!

Here comes another “name” favorite!  I usually do this activity early in the name study, as it is so popular.  The set up is very simple.  I type out each child’s name in a large font and print out a set of names.  (You could also hand write every child’s name on a piece of paper.)  The name should fill the page.

I put each piece of paper in a plastic sleeve (page protector), and give each child a chunk of play dough.  They then have to build their name using play dough!  I model this process for them first, and point out how I pay attention to the features of each letter as I build it.  For example, I call attention to straight lines, curves, short or long lines, etc.

This activity requires kids to notice features of letters, and it gives them a concrete, tactile experience exploring those letters (which is great, given how symbolic letters actually are!)  They also begin to notice how many letters they have in their names, as some of them need more play dough than others!

Best of all, the kids love it!  How do you use tactile activities to explore letters, words, and names?

4 Responses to Play Dough Names!

  1. Shirley Blowers February 24, 2013 at 4:58 pm #

    What font did you use and what size was it? Thanks!

    • Teaching Ace February 24, 2013 at 5:02 pm #

      I used Comic Sans, since the a and g are not “fancy.” The font size ranged from 150 to 250, depending on the length of the name. I also made the paper landscape so I could make the names bigger.

  2. Stacey July 25, 2014 at 11:23 am #

    Thank you for this idea. Do you know what font to use to “fill in” their name with play dough? Like a bubble font?

    • Karen Langdon July 27, 2014 at 5:22 am #

      Honestly I don’t worry about a bubble font. I always used Comic Sans (even though I don’t particularly like it) because the a and g are how I want them to be. The kids easily make the play dough letters over the top of them. However, you could check out the font Epic Awesomeness. It is a neat bubble font. The g is good, but the a is type set. Best of luck!