Outdoor Literacy Activity: Sticky Letters

19 November 2011 · 6 comments

in Literacy Outdoors

This term I have been asked to undertake literacy activities with one class. This has provided an ideal opportunity to work on lots of ways of doing this outside. I’ve blogged about creating letters from natural materials previously. However, we’re going back a couple of steps before getting to this stage.

Last term we spent the sessions acclimatising to being outside. Fred the Ted helped us all enormously and now we have a routine that’s based around moving from place to place in the school grounds and undertaking short, sweet activities including songs or games at the different stopping points. This remains organic in that the stopping places can vary. It’s the journey and the joy of discovery that counts. Usually we end up at the wildlife garden which is a popular spot with all the children.

So a couple of weeks ago, I decided that sticky letters would be a start. This involves cutting up a few pieces of cardboard and sticking double sided sticky tape onto them. We used the initial letter of each child’s name.

I was a little worried in that when the yellow paper is removed, the children would not be able to see the outline of their letter. This did not seem to be a problem. It was a dry day so the material stuck to the cardboard quite nicely.

My other concern was whether the children would recognise a rough-and-ready letter rather than a beautifully drawn example. When I handed these out, it was a relief to see that most of the children did indeed recognise their letter.

When the children are playing in the wildlife garden, I’m interested that the books and clipboards remain an attraction. I think it provides a focus for a little quiet reflection and contemplation. But I’m not sure. Often a couple of boys will walk around the garden making notes and looking important.

For me, I’m just pleased that the children are enjoying and responding to literacy outdoors. I can’t think of a more natural approach…

This post is part of the outdoor play party link up

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{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Mama Pea Pod November 19, 2011 at 22:11

Juliet, this is a perfect way to introduce letters! Will definitely be trying this soon.

Hoping you’ll be linking this up to this week’s Outdoor Play Party! (hint hint!)



Scott November 20, 2011 at 02:30

I love this idea, Juliet. Mixing literacy and outside/nature isn’t always the easiest thing to do but this idea is perfect.


Juliet Robertson November 20, 2011 at 07:53

Hi Scott

I think it’s getting over the initial hurdle of just knowing about the possibilities. I’m planning on posting more about this in due course.

The down side of this activity is that I created the sticky letters beforehand which if one has a class of 25 or 30 children is a tall order. However with most classes, I would probably make that the challenge of the previous day – to create the letter board.

I think it would make a nice activity for parents to do at home with their child too. A walk and play in the park would be a must as part of this!!!

Hope this helps.

Best wishes


Your Therapy Source Inc November 20, 2011 at 20:27

Love this idea. I enjoy any idea that incorporates the outdoors with learning. I have done a video that has several ideas on taking handwriting outdoors. You can view it at YourTherapySource.


Abbie November 21, 2011 at 03:07

I love this idea! My daughter is not quite ready for this, she would need a lot of help with what starts with S but very shortly I think we will be able to tackle this no problem! Great idea.
Thanks for sharing it with the outdoor play party and for sharing the link up with your readers!


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