We’re still working on the Arabic alphabet with Mr Z and I’m always looking for playful ways to reinforce his learning. Since we have some Arabic alphabet books with shiny wipe clean pages, they also work great as playdough mats and I decided to give him some plasticine to work on shaping the letter and matching them up to the letters in the book. This will also work fine with any type of playdough but we used plasticine as we had plenty on hand in the cupboard.
If you don’t have a wipe clean Arabic alphabet book (ours is from Morocco, thanks to my Father in Law who brings them for us!) then I have created some basic Arabic alphabet printables that you could laminate and use for this activity. Once laminated, they would then wipe clean and be reusable for any other activity too.
Shaping the letters is a very tactile kinesthetic way of learning. When our children are learning the English alphabet we do all these types of activities and give them time to learn through play and absorb the information by doing and playing, so I want to use the same methods for Arabic learning.
Mr Z was keen to get started on the activity and to show the letters and words that he knows. To reinforce and extend the learning I would repeat the letters together with him while we made each one, and read the other words in the book for each letter. If you are using the basic printable mats you can add extra words verbally, getting your child to listen out for the letter sound at the beginning, middle or end of the word.
You can talk about which groups of letters have the same shapes, this really stood out to Mr Z more by making the letters with the plasticine rather than when he had been simply reading and writing them. We used different coloured pieces within some of the letters just for fun and to let him use his creativity, but you could use one colour to make the bases for all the letters that share the same shape, and then take a second colour to add in the dots. [Like Ba, Ta, Tha – or Jeem, Ha, Kha]
You could also work on making the initial, medial and end forms of the letters as well as the isolated forms. Perhaps we will move on to this next time. You could then use those models to build Arabic words.
Some letters are easier to shape than others, as you can see by our Ta here but with playdough or plasticine you can just roll it back into a ball and then try again. For children who get frustrated at mistakes in their written work, this can be a low pressure way to work on the letter formations as part of a fun game.
While they are having fun making the playdough or plasticine letters, you also have their attention if you want to reinforce other concepts. I am working on the 3 letter roots with Mr Z at the moment. It will take some more time before he has that concept solidified, but by talking him through a couple of examples like Taa’ir (6aa2ir) and Taa’irah (6aa2irah) shown on the page above, he can see the similarities in meaning being linked to their sharing of the root letters. (although this has a weak letter as part of the root so it’s not the easiest example, but being in the book made it handy!)
What fun ways have you used to work on Arabic alphabet with your kids? Please share with me in the comments or on my Facebook wall at In The Playroom
You might also like:
- Arabic Alphabet Candles
- Arabic books and games for kids
- Learning Arabic with Rosetta Stone
- Jamaal & Layla
Or follow our Arabic and Islamic activities Pinterest board: