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Sand Letter Tracing - Writing Activity

This activity will help your little ones practice their fine motor skills with their fingers as well as letter, number and word recognition!

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Practice writing and letter recognition in a sensory bin!

Children love to explore different mediums with their hands. Using a sensory bin, this activity will let your little one explore different textures while practicing their letters, numbers, shapes and writing!

👷 Incorporate different materials. Extend this activity to use unsharpened pencils (golf pencils work great for small hands) or a paintbrush to practice holding utensils using the pincer grasp using the thumb and first finger.

🌈 Add a surprise! You can put colored paper below the medium you use for a special surprise (double surprise - make it rainbow!).


For this Activity you will need:


Small index cards


Small shells/rocks (optional)

Small baking tray or flat sensory bin

Learning Outcomes




Letter Recognition


Identifying the letter that begins their names and its sound


Step 1:

Dump sand into a thin layer in the sensory bin/tray.

Step 2:

Using markers, write letters on each index card.

Step 3:

Place the card in front of the bin and have your child use their finger to copy the letter in the sand.

Step 4

(optional): The child can use the pile of shells/rocks to fill in the lines of each letter to really understand what each letter looks like. The more practice for each letter the better!

Step 5:

Have the child practice writing the letter several times until they’re comfortable to move onto the next letter in the deck. You can also encourage them to practice the letters in their name.

⬆️ For older preschoolers: Use sight words instead of letters.

⬇️ For younger toddlers: Start with shapes and squiggles. Once they’ve mastered those, feel free to then move to upper case letters like E, F, L, and then more tricky ones like K, A, Z and W.

Playful Questions

Which finger do you like to use best to trace the letters?

Which letters were easier to trace?

Can you spell your name in the sand?

How many rocks/shells fit inside each letter?

Can you trace the letters without the letter cards?

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