Have you started doing ABC's or counting yet?

Bec - posted on 06/28/2010 ( 53 moms have responded )

18

13

2

Im wondering how other parents are going about teaching their 15month old the alphabet and numbers?

MOST HELPFUL POSTS

Lady - posted on 06/29/2010

2,136

73

221

Don't try and push your baby - he's just tiny and has the rest of his life to learn. Just try and enjoy the stage he is at now, they grow up so quickly. My 4 year old is just starting to learn the alphabet - my older two learned it at the normal school age time as well and are both so bright - the top of all their classes.
The best way for babies to learn now is through play and exploring the world around them - they are learning new stuff everyday. building towers with bricks or pouring water from a jug in the bath is a huge learning experience for them one teaches balance and cause and effect - the other teaches volume and physics - there are learning tools everywhere that are so important for them - they are the building blocks of future learning - don't try and rush numbers and letters onto them before they are ready or they may miss out on something else vital!!!

Jo-anne - posted on 07/06/2010

24

7

0

Hi, I'm a teacher, I thought I'd add in my professional view and my personal experience.



In regards to promoting Literacy skills in children it is far more important at this young age to be familiarising children with books, much more so than learning the alphabet. Read to your child every day, read the same books over and over again so your child starts to understand that the words and story do not change. Nursery rhymes and simple songs are also good ways to promote language and an understanding of words.



The alphabet really isn't important until a child starts learning to write. In terms of reading, the English language has 26 letters, but 44 sounds, so it is more important to focus on the sounds letters make than the letter names. At this early age though it is far too confusing to do this. I have a 3 1/2 year old and although he can sing the alphabet and can spell his own name, I have chosen not to focus on the alphabet with him yet. Instead I'm teaching him common words that he can recognise by sight: a, be, I, if, in, is, it, the, that, was. This will already give him a head start in reading, because these words make up a 1/4 of all reading. But I didn't start familiarising him with these until he was 2.



As for counting, definitely start as early as you want. With both my children I take any opportunity to count to them. I count the buttons on their shirts as I do them up, I count the eggs as I put them in the egg basket, I count their toes, I count as my son jumps on the trampoline. Sing lots of counting songs.My 3 1/2 year old loves numbers and is now counting to 30 perfectly and can sometimes count to 40. My 16 month old has just started imitating the rhythm of counting, though she can't articulate any numbers yet, which is how my son started.



You don't have to use flashcards or make scheduled learning time, just use every opportunity as learning experiences for your child (and trust me, they're learning all the time anyway). Let their natural curiosity lead you. If your child is playing with a rubber ducky in the bath, take the opportunity to sing a song about ducks ('Five Little Ducks', 'Rubber Ducky', 'All the Ducks'). If they're stacking blocks say, "Hey let's count how many you can build." If your child points to the letter M on a carton of milk and asks what it says, by all means tell them.



And I just want to add to be wary of so called 'phonics' programs and sites that only teach one sound per letter, as this can confuse children later on when they a trying to spell or sound out words in reading and they discover that many letters have more than one sound ('c' has at least 3 different sounds eg: cat, rice, social) and some sounds can be made by more than one letter. (the middle sound in 'hot' is made by an 'o', but the same sound in 'was' is made by an 'a') - You can see how confusing that is for an adult, let alone a young child. So don't worry too much about the alphabet until they reach school, or preschool.

Tammy - posted on 07/12/2010

5

18

0

Our children are sponges for learning. I do not push things but as other moms have said...I do sing the ABC's to my 15 mo old and I also let her play with flashcards. If she picks one that she carries around, then I tell her what it is, etc.
My lil girl knows the letter "A" and tries to sing along w/ Barney when he does the ABC's.
I do believe in books books books at this age! ;)

[deleted account]

I'm so glad to hear other mums teaching their babies, I mean, why wouldn't you. Yes, you want to teach your child motor skills but I agree with Rachael. Babies brains are growing at a rapid pace and the more you can teach them now the more developed their brains become.
This then leads to them being more curious, craving information and wanting to learn so why wait for school, start now I say! And as a lot of the mum's have said there are lots of great ways of making learning fun with rhymes, blocks, water letters, songs and reading.
Remember though that it takes a child to see hundreds of words before they are able to start reading so don't be discouraged if they don't get it straight away. It takes them a while to recognise the patterns in words and sounds so it won't happen over night. I started with words like nose where he can touch his nose, so he reads it, or sings it, sees it and then does it.
I've found there is one draw back though..............he now gets bored easily and starts to be naughty if he's not learning. So my boy does need to be learning all the time, whether it be motor skills like balance or cause and effect, discovering nature and things outside or learning to say and read new words.............he is such a sponge right now.
www.fisher-price.com also have free and fun learning games from babies to toddlers to preschool.

Rachelle - posted on 06/30/2010

18

84

3

Whenever I change my sons diaper I always count. He stays still for me and I like to think I am teaching him something. I make sure to do it in dramatic voices though. Maybe he just thinks I'm weird.

If you see this, leave this form field blank.
Powered by RESPECT not THUMPS

53 Comments

View replies by

[deleted account]

Children at an age learn better through play and songs. I have been counting to my daughter since she was a new born. Count the steps as I'm going up or down the stairs. Counting as I'm buttoning her pjs. I read a book before bed and throughout the day if she wants me to. When she points at anything letters, number, ect.. I lable it for her by saying what it is. My daughter loves hide and seek so when she is playing with a shape, letter, ect. I'll heed it and ask where did it go. And she will than look for it and find it. After she knows the name of the item I will mix it with all her toys and a her where is ..... She always finds them. I have been doing this ever since she could sit up on her own. Just teach through games and play with them. Have lots of fun with her/ him.

Kylie - posted on 07/13/2010

1

0

0

My daughter has plenty of toys that sing alphabet songs n she now trys to sing along with them - it occasionally sounds like she says A, B, C, D but i am not pushing her to learn them, she will do so in her own time.

Darlene - posted on 07/13/2010

20

24

0

I have not been pushing anything on him, but i have been singing the ABC's to him since he was 3 months old, and i have a banner of the ABC's on the wall down low where he can reach them. So he points to stuff and i tell him what it is, it seems fun for him..

Meagan - posted on 07/13/2010

2

16

0

If your child shows interest, go with it... We are working on ABC's and 123's and my daughter loves it.. She counts to 5 and will start off the alphabet..

Robbie - posted on 07/12/2010

42

18

0

i agree with you tammy my grandbaby love books books and more books, and music,where ever she see a book she pick it up and look at it.and that is all the time.she is a little sponge, pick up every thing and look at everything.

Lineo Mahula - posted on 07/12/2010

12

34

0

My 15.5 son will try and repeat once what u've just said and get impatient immediately if u insist. But I keep trying and he listens well if I sing them rather than talk. For him to repeat after me will be a process.

Robbie - posted on 07/10/2010

42

18

0

i am with some of the other mom. my grandbaby has been expose to books and learning thing as young as 6month, she love books and love for you to read to her,she like the sound of the abc while she look at books now she is trying to read for her self, she is 15 month, she pick up on everything, and try to do what ever you do, she is learning fast, thank God. she wake up with a book and go to bed with a book and she is fine, just smileing and baby talking,

Dorsha - posted on 07/10/2010

40

9

0

Oh and totally agreed, don't be pushy. My sis tried to force her daughter to sit with her and look at word and number cards and she hated it and faught it every bit if the say, she is three now and says very little and yeah. My 15 month old can say more, he can count to six and say some of his alphabet, we have gotten to g. And i only do it when we are playing or what have you... Make it fun. Oh and if you all are cool with a mess... Paint or whipped cream.... Smear it on a table or high chair, then let em play in it, you can spell words, or make letters/numbers... We loved it as toddlers and my son love it too.

Dorsha - posted on 07/10/2010

40

9

0

We just randomly do alphabets. Or if he is pointing to his cereal, I spell it out while pointing to the letters. And as for counting. He has blocks and he will hand em to me one at a time and I count them, and then do it the other way, handing them to him and counting. We also count his toys as we put them away and such... Also with the alphabet, my son loves when I so it in sign language

Karen - posted on 07/09/2010

2

14

0

mean't to say don't push it, I tried really hard to compete with other mums when i had my eldest and it didn't work. she is now an advanced, stable and confient child who has got fantastic school reports! in the end i did everything at her pace and its come out tops!!

Karen - posted on 07/09/2010

2

14

0

My 16mth will count to 3 but only because i give my eleder daughter a count of 3 when she won't do what she's supposed to do. I count one and babes says two!!

Barbara - posted on 07/09/2010

4

55

0

I agree with the other moms not to push them hard to learn. i sing the alphabet with my daughter while she is watching sesame street or playing with one of her learning toys. And i also count with her as she is playing. I recently noticed that my 15 month daughter knows how to count to three and i was so excited. So i repeat those numbers with her. I think that participating along with them as they are playing with their learning toys is an essential key.

Monique - posted on 07/09/2010

8

103

0

i haven't pushed my son at all, but ever since he was born my mom has been counting to him at least twice a day. she started with 1-3 from birth to about 6 mts, then from 6-12 mts she moved from 1-5 and after his first birthday she went all the way to 10. My son is now 16 mts and when i say lets count, and i start he knows the numbers now he knows 1-3 perfect and that 6 comes after 5, but the rest of his numbers he just kind of mixes them around.

Chereen - posted on 07/09/2010

4

17

0

id give it a go my daughter started talking at 11months her first word was "love music" but i wouldnt be to pushy maybe just teach your child the first 5

Katie - posted on 07/08/2010

4

17

0

I also am not too concerned with my son learning that stuff yet. I work at a daycare/preschool and his teacher sings the class the ABC's everyday and a number song so he is definitly hearing them all the time. They don't need to know them now nor are they gonna know what they are learning yet!! Stick with Mama, Dada and ball for now!!

Laura - posted on 07/08/2010

1

20

0

My daughter does the your baby can read program. She can recognize and read out loud several words. Others when she sees the words on flash cards she can point to body parts or act it out like clap or wave. We just encourage her, but we never push her.

Ashley - posted on 07/08/2010

14

31

1

For ABC's I will sing the song to her or w/ her (she mumbles along to everything). I always point out the letter A to her & write A's on her paper while she is drawing since her name begins with A. She has foam letters for the tub and sometimes when she's holding one I will say the letter and she repeats it. At this age its more about introducing things to them.

For numbers we use counting books a lot. I'll help her point and she will use my finger & "help" me point/count as well. When she's playing with toys and has a few of them lined up I will touch them and count and she mimics me...she can count to 3 pretty well with a one-to-one correspondence that way.

Tracie - posted on 07/07/2010

1

39

0

O has number and letter books that we read and we do the alphabet in the car. At daycare they say the alphabet and when they get to G she says HIJK so she is picking up something. She also says 3 after we say 1, 2. Daycare counts before they get timeout so she hears that alot when kids misbehave and just picked it up. We don't push it, I would actually rather her learn the animal sounds but she is completely uninterested except for cat and dog.

Jamie - posted on 07/07/2010

39

13

4

We are just working on the things for his age, and above (he has always been a bit ahead) We work on skills from 18-24 months. Like problem solving, scribbling, following 2 part directions etc. You can google search toddler milestones, to find age appropriate goals.
As a previous Preschool & Kinder teacher, I really wouldn't worry about these until later, I plan on introducing and playing around with letters and numbers more towards 2 1/2 -- 3.
And if he gets them reat! If not we still got 2 years before Kindergarten! :)

Colleen - posted on 07/07/2010

100

35

2

As a teacher, it's just been a normal part of our conversations with our son. We are not pushing anything on him, but it's nice when pointing things out to say "red car" or "two pictures" or "that is an A." We have the "Chicka Chicka Boom Boom" book that deal with letters in a cute way. He's a very physical child, so he is having fun exploring and playing in his environment, learning about his doggies, etc. The numbers and alphabet are just two of the many things we play with...

Serina - posted on 07/07/2010

3

15

0

For both of my children I started out just as a game. I sing it a couple of times to them while I brush their teeth. My 15 month old son thinks it is great and won't let me brush his teeth unless I sing it through. We also sing it during clean up time at night! Then as they get older and take the cues from them...they will let you know when they are ready to really start learning, but by giving them the basics early..you are showing them it can be fun and without them knowing it...they are learning!

Casey - posted on 07/07/2010

5

56

0

I have sung the ABC's song every night since she was born. It was the only thing my daughter likes. Now I know she sings it sometimes even if she doesn't really say the letters yet.

Cecile - posted on 07/06/2010

6

1

0

I think, well at least with my child, that children pick things up very quickly, so although we are not actively "teaching" him specific things my son has a vocab of over 20 words, can sound letters and words well and like the above response knows which direction pages are to be turned. He also copies all of my husband and my behaviours and actions. That is why I firmly believe that you don't need to push. I work full time, and am not able to spend a lot of time in a learning capacity with my son.....but he is quite a little smarty pants.
Children learn fast esp. if they are interested and enjoying their environment and acitivies.

A'Lisa - posted on 07/06/2010

24

28

0

I am also a teacher and completely agree with Jo-anne on the importance of reading to children every day and practicing the SOUNDS of letters as opposed to the actual letters themselves. My 16 mo. old knows the direction the pages in a book should turn, and we sing the ABCs frequently. She is always there as I read to my 4 and 6 yr. old--and while my 6 yr. old reads aloud to us. If you have the time for all the extra stuff, that's great (I don't--yikes!), but I feel that even if they can "read" or recite their alphabet early, it will all even out when they start school. Of course, developing a positive attitude for school and learning is a huge plus, as long as it stays fun for them! :)

Cecile - posted on 07/06/2010

6

1

0

I agree with not pushing your bub to be good at things that he will eventually learn anyway. Just for some information, if children are taught too much, when they start school they can be very bored, and play up much more than usual. Keep that in mind.

Crystal - posted on 07/06/2010

27

0

2

My daughter is 15 months old, and I started last month with the ABCs, and she can now say A-D. I started with A and just said it over and over all week and she started repeating me. It took awhile with the letter C but she is doing well. Numbers is a whole another world. LOL! She can point to the letters A, and B as well.

Kate - posted on 07/06/2010

19

15

3

True, don't force the issue, but on the other hand, there is nothing wrong with exposure, and using the tools for fun. My son is 16mos old, and its amazing as how much he is learning and saying everyday! My sister gave him a Sesame Street learning kit that has a play mat and flash cards; I also have a centipede stroller buddy that has 5 numbers in five different colours(that also plays classical music and says the numbers in song), so he knows what numbers are, as I ask to push #3, and he does, and I mix it up, and put the #'s in order. Through repetition and entertainment, he has learned. He also knows colours, or at least the primary ones!

Ever since he was a newborn, I have always sang to him the songs from the Sound of Music(n I know all the words to the songs, so I enjoyed singing them all to him) as it would calm him down and he would fall asleep. Its also the only movie he watches intently! It teaches him the music alphabet of Do, re, me!

Another example...the other day I asked him if he wanted 1 or 2 crackers, and in expecting Ryan to nod his head, he held up 2 fingers and said "two" please! I was shocked, as he said it in the right context, and he knew how to hold up 2 fingers. So repetition does work, and they do learn, and understand! I don't force the issue, but at least I know he is learning at the same time he is having fun!

Wo_jordan - posted on 07/05/2010

14

10

4

i have be doing the abc and 123 from the start, he is just starting to do the 123 he can say 2 and hold up two things it is to cute, just very so often in day to day life count or sing the abc's they will pick it up soon or later

Stephenie - posted on 07/05/2010

3

8

0

Sing the alphabet to him...when you are having one on one, say things like M is for Mummy, make the sign with your hand...can teach them all day long, but without it being a forceful process, as we interaact, they learn, more one on one, sounding out letters, my son is now saying alphabet with to 'E" hes 15 months, I did same with my 4 yr old, she writes names, reads words, but never forced with either, just breaking it down for them in a fun way :)

Michelle - posted on 07/05/2010

2

14

0

We have a lot of toys that teach her the alphabet. Vtech is really good for that kind of stuff. The best one is her train. It has the blocks that each have a letter on one side and a word/picture on the other such as A and Apple. She'll either put them on the train and the train will tell her the letter or bring them to us and we'll tell her the letter repeatedly and eventually she'll say the letter then go grab another. I'm not really pushing her to learn, but she has fun doing it so why not?

Biya - posted on 07/05/2010

13

26

0

I think it is too early for a 15months old child to learn ABC but sings it when trying to get his attention.

Juliana - posted on 07/05/2010

9

29

0

i count 1-2-3 and taught him to show he is one year old with his index finger...too cute. and the abc's i think he knows the vowels (im from brazil we teach/learn the vowels separately) and ive heard him say the a-e-i-o-u but idt he knows he's saying them lol

he learns words with his toys, he learned bye ...im teaching him colors. and tomorrow im buying a potty.

i feel it's important for us parents to sit with our kids and play with them and teach them things, i went to visit my mom for 3 weeks in brasil and in this meantime my son learned so many diff words i thought it was crazy.

Ashley - posted on 07/05/2010

3

17

0

With my daughter I started a long time ago....I usually try to sing or ABC's to her while she is bathing or eating...I try to make it a fun time so she will enjoy learning....She now says ABCD and repeats it while I sing the rest, she has done this since before she was 1 year old. My mom taught me my ABC's like this and has me on tape at 18 months old singing the whole song by myself.

Melissa - posted on 07/05/2010

8

15

0

I have a 16 month old and I read Dr. Seuss ABC book to him just about everyday and he loves it! Maybe yours will too!

Rachael - posted on 07/05/2010

31

22

0

I have to say I agree with Vicki. My little one just turned 15 months and she has been learning from the beginning. We don't force it, but when I am playing with her, I try to teach her letters and numbers, and she knows some basic sign language. I swear she learns something new everyday! She is very smart, and when you make it fun, they are interested, and do understand at this age. Babies learn more in their first 5 years than anything else, and if you just let that time go to waist, they will learn slower as they get older. My daughter loves to read, she will bring us book after book after book, and we read them to her when she does. Also, she will sit and try to read it to us. She has the sticky bath letters and numbers, learning videos with alphabet, numbers, signs, music, etc, and she has tons of toys that teach alphabet, numbers, words, animals, and sounds, and so on. You might be suprised at what a child that age can comprehend. Give it a try, it definitley won't hurt anything!

[deleted account]

Well, I'm different and have to disagree on that kids won't be able to understand at a young age. I believe in certainly not pushing but kids love to learn. I've been teaching my son to read since he was six months old. He could read before he could talk by pointing to what he was reading like nose, ears, eyes and without the assistance of pictures.

He is now 15 months old and can read over 80 words, by themselves, and understand what they are. If you don't believe me feel free to become a friend with me on facebook and look at my video of ben reading. It's really easy to teach and he enjoys it so much.
It also helps so much being out and about as he knows words like stop and will read the word stop, say it and then not move.
And I ensure I only teach when he wants to or takes me to his flash cards and books.

Skyler - posted on 07/04/2010

21

54

0

i dont think our 15 mo's would really be able to actually COMPREHEND that stuff right @ the moment; i'd give it a little while longer

Nancy - posted on 07/04/2010

128

6

3

just to give you a little more perspective, I am just starting alphabet with my 3 1/2 year old. He knows 1-10, but I am not even thinking of that yet with my 15 month old.
I wouldn't push it, just maybe sing ABCs when you wash her hands and stuff.

Emma - posted on 07/04/2010

8

12

0

I would say that is too young, but when you do teach them, check with the school which they would like the children to learn (as there are different ways of writing) and don't teach the capitals first :-)

Amy - posted on 07/04/2010

68

21

3

my 16 mth old loves listening to us sing the abcs (used to be the only song that'd quiet her down when she was a newborn). We count to five with some stuff because she thinks its funny. Not really doing it for learning purposes, but if she learns something in the meantime, couldn't hurt. More for entertainment.

Kelli - posted on 07/02/2010

152

4

10

Im not yet. I do have books with animals and the sounds they all make. She loves that. I personally think that she is a little young for the alpahbet and counting. Counting might be easier, like 1. . . 2. . . 3! and act like you are going to tickle him or her.

Jessica - posted on 07/01/2010

70

10

23

Well, I sing the ABCs. He really likes when I sing and make up songs but that's one I always do. And he likes when I count to him. He'll point to things and I count. That's all we do. I'm not trying to make sure he knows his alphabet and numbers. It's just another way to interact. I also do colors, animal sounds, etc. Just for fun. No pressure. :)

Meagan - posted on 07/01/2010

182

81

18

I've always sang the alphabet to my son since he was 10 or 11 months. As far as counting I always count his fingers or toes when we're playing. I also wrote the letters & numbers on paper for him to actually see. It must be working somehow cause he can say the number two :)

Julie - posted on 06/30/2010

14

16

0

We have bath toys that stick to the wall - A-Z and numbers 0-9 sometimes my daughter chews on them ,.if she's teething, sometimes I spell something for her like Cat and other times I count all the numbers that she has so she hears it & has a visual. Also I buy her alphabet books & things like that. She loves her books I make sure to read them to her whenever she brings me a book. I too like to push the education & reading in my family. Obviously not push in a mean was but in a fun, interactive way.

Linda - posted on 06/30/2010

14

31

0

I agree with the others moms that you shouldn't push your child to learn alphabets or numbers just yet, but there is absolutely nothing wrong with exposing them to it! I speak to many moms and they show their kids flash cards, read books and use other supplemental learning tools. I personally like to use the website, "starfall.com", because there are little exercises for alphabets and they also sing the alphabet song (in a very animated way)! This website is wonderful, and it's something you can use for years to come! He also enjoys playing with books, so like I said before, exposure is good enough for right now.

Jennifer - posted on 06/29/2010

301

0

46

I'm not pushing my son to learn his alphabet and numbers yet, but we do have books with them in and toys that sing them. Even though he's not learning them, he hears them and definitely learns through that.

If you see this, leave this form field blank.
Powered by RESPECT not THUMPS

Join Circle of Moms

Sign up for Circle of Moms and be a part of this community! Membership is just one click away.

Join Circle of Moms