Play to Write-Write to Read: Week 7

Welcome to Week 7!

If you are joining us for the first time, I encourage you to first read Play to Write-Write to Read: Week 1. Then, be sure to come back and join us for this week’s play group activities!

Welcome back! We are so glad you joined us again this week! Were you able to make an ABC book last week?! We finished Letter A and going to begin Letter B book this week. Each week I love to see what writing activities some of you are working on with your little ones. Wendy shared this some great spelling ideas using the game Upwards last week! This would be a great tool for working with your child on spelling sight words and or their name! Thanks again to all of you who have been sharing, we are loving your great ideas as well! 

Just a reminder those of you who are joining our Play Group each week, you are asked to please do 2 things:

1. Comment on how these activities worked or didn’t work with your child. Feel free to reply to one another to encourage and offer your advice as well! This will also be great to hold us all accountable to one another to actually follow through… don’t we all need a little of that!? :)

2. Share: Bloggers-you can link up a writing activity you’ve done with your child in the past to share with everyone. You are totally welcome to reteach the same strategies on your blogs and then link up those posts the following week (please do be sure to link back). Non-Bloggers & Bloggers we encourage you to teach/share these activities with another mom friend. Wouldn’t it be fabulous if more and more parents began to learn Best Practices for writing to ‘play’ with their kids; these types of activities are not just for teachers! Let’s empower each other by sharing!

The FUNdamentals

 (The FUNdamentals section focuses on guiding your toddler/preschooler through the basics of developing the fine motor and gross motor skills needed for the physical act of writing, but doing so with ‘fun’ activity.) 

Activities: 5 Writing Grasp Strengthening Activities


1. Improve writing grasp

2. Improve hand and finger awareness

3. Improve hand control for writing

4.  Have Fun!

5 Writing Grasp Strengthening Activities

1. Palm to Palm Push- Place hands palm to palm and push for 5 seconds. Repeat 3 times.

2. Finger Taps– Tap each finger and thumb on a table top one at a time. Repeat.

3. Thumb to Finger Touches– Start with touching your index finger and thumb together, then middle, ring, and pinkie finger. Reverse and repeat 3 times each hand.

4. Inch Worm– Hold pencil in writing hand, then inch fingers up the pencil shaft and back down, repeat 3 times.

5. Pencil Tugs– Hold pencil with three finger grasp in writing hand and tug on it with the other hand 5 times, then repeat.

*Note: While Big Brother’s writing is improving a lot recently, I was surprised at how much he struggled with these exercises. Many of them are more advanced fine motor/coordination skills that often get overlooked in teaching a child to write. Luckily, each of these activities were ‘game like’ and very enjoyable. This list will be our new ‘go-to’ activities while we are waiting in the car, at the doctor’s office, or when need a quick distraction at a restaurant! 

Writing Practice

(The Writing Practice section focuses on a new ‘Best Practice’ Writing Strategy each week. A ‘Best Practice’ writing strategy is a technique or methodology that, through experience and research, has proven to reliably lead to creating strong writers.) 

Activity: Create ‘Wordle’ Personalized Gifts


1. List words that describe a special person.

2. Type the words with assistance. (optional)

3. Create a gift of words.

4. Recognize the ‘power’ of words.

6. Have Fun!


  • Computer
  • Printer with Colored Ink
  • Picture Frame (optional)
1. Go to Click on the Create Your Own button. 
2. Choose a special person in your life you would like to gift a special gift of words to. Have your child describe that person, things they do with that person, associated words thought of when they think of that person etc.
3. Change the fonts, size, etc. to your preference.
4. Print, frame, and gift.
*Note: This is a great opportunity to impress on your child the importance of using kind words. Kind and encouraging words and be a gift and build someone up. Hurtful and discouraging words can tear someone down and make them feel sad. What a great visual for teaching our kids that words need to be gifts! 

Click Here to Grab the Code! 


  1. I taught pre-school/pre-K for over 20 years. One of the best pincer skill builders I ever use was having the children sort out small pom-poms into pills according to color. size, or into number groups using only index finger and thumb for younger children and tweezers for older children. They always seemed to like it and it worked the pincer muscles quite well, making it much easier to learn to handle a pencil much easier for them. I also had them place them from left to right on pattern strips to get in some pre-reading skills in too.
    I don’t know if any of this helps, but I thought I share.

  2. What a special gift words can be! Thanks!

  3. Some great ideas, as always! I like how you chose a few appropriate finger-strengthening activities to suit your kiddo. Tweezers, chopsticks, play dough, etc . . . all good ways to strengthen those fingers. Another thing I found with my son . . . Legos! I let him use the regular Legos when he was pretty young — a bit before he turned 3. Of course, I was sure to keep a close eye on him when he was younger! His fine motor skills developed ahead of schedule and they’re awesome now (at age 5). Sorry for rambling!

    Also, I’m a dork and can’t seem to get to the link-ups at the bottom of your post. I was able to add mine, but I can’t access the one before mine. Thanks for hosting! And I am definitely going to try the Wordle idea!!

  4. This is SOOOOO where we are at right now in preschool. Thank you so much for these great tips. I’d love to have you link it up to Titus 2 Tuesday on <a href= Hope to see you there.


  5. JDaniel so needs to work on this. Thank you for giving me exercises we can do together.

  6. These are amazing tips! Thanks for sharing! I agree, great activities while waiting at places! And I can’t wait to check out!


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