Curiosity. It is a magical thing. It has the power to pull people, to lead them and guide them to places they would not otherwise go, and they follow happily.
When I introduce letters to kids, I want to make a good base for my phonics instruction. I want them to think of the sounds related to the letters in a strong way. So I start with keywords. One word for every letter. The Keyword is usually simple and familiar in an easily imaginable way. For instance, apple, for the letter A.
I introduce the letter with a flashcard. On one side is the letter, and the other side has a picture of the keyword. The flashcard is almost B5 sized. I put it behind a blank card and hold it up facing the child/children. Then I slowly reveal parts of the pictureby sliding it down, up or sideways, with a quizzical expression on my face. The kids love it, becuase it is a puzzle to be solved. I have also created the ‘what it it?’ feeling in them, and can later use this to teach that phrase (question).
After they guess right or I prompt them with the question and give away the answer (usually answered by a stuffed animal so I don’t become the ‘source’) we can proceed with a few games to get familiar with the keyword: slap, go and get (simple: put three to five cards down on the floor and ask them to go get ___; they can also practice ‘here you are’ when they give you the card).
Next step is the progression to the letter, printed in big font upper case and lower case on the back of the card. I repeat the sound twice and then the keyword (A-A-apple) so it becomes a chant. for the first while I want them to always say that chant to ingrain the sound relationship.
Then we can start some simple games to identify the letter (slap, go and get or others you may prefer).
By the second or third class we can start writing the letters if the kids are about five years old. I have started earlier, but they forget so fast, and their motor skills a lower and starting at a lower age is only really effective if they get daily instruction; once a week only serves to frustrate most kids.
Once they are practicing writing we can then start on the game most of them really like: run and write. We line up at one end of the room, with markers and small whiteboards at the other end. I say the sound and we run to the whieboards and write the letter (ususally upper and lower case). Note that lower case is much more commonly written than upper case so it is usually better to practise that.
By this stage you are ready for progression through the alphabet. The next stage is putting simple combinations together. Have fun writing!