Squiggles & Wiggles Preschool
Agest 3-4 years and Special Needs Learners
Setting the Foundation
Squiggles and Wiggles Preschool takes advantage of little learners’ love of movement to introduce body control and directionality related to letter and number formation. Of course, they don’t need to know that! They just enjoy wiggling while they play with the Squiggle Squad animals. The Squiggles & Wiggles resources provide teachers with activities that guide kids from large body movement to the hand control that prepares them for writing.
Little Bodies, Big Moves
Improving gross motor skills—those body awareness skills that involve large muscle control, balance, and strength—is the first step in getting a kiddo ready for handwriting. The Squiggles & Wiggles Stroke Posters are a fun way to practice large movement body control while learning each member of the Squiggle Squad’s favorite stroke. A poster is put on the wall for the students to follow. Little learners “trace” the paths embedded in the picture in the air using their hands, fingers, or even their nose! Paths are drawn to enforce movements that mirror handwriting strokes. The Stroke Posters are a great way for the teacher or parent to assess a child’s body control and ability to follow instructions.
Motor Skill Progression
Fine motor skills—those control and coordination skills that involve small muscles—are practiced through the use of Finger Fun table mats and reproducible activity sheets. These resources provide the next incremental step in a child’s learning progression toward handwriting readiness. Little learners follow paths on printed sheets using one or multiple fingers to further develop the muscle control needed for handwriting. Teachers can use these materials to evaluate a child’s motor control, attention span, and ability to follow instructions.
Beginning to Write
Little learners benefit from having some practice using a writing implement apart from forming letters and numbers. In addition to the table mats and other finger trace activities, crayon practice playsheets provide the next incremental step toward handwriting. This step further hones fine motor skills by requiring the learner to control a writing instrument through a progression of strokes and patterns that mimic handwriting movements. Regular stroke practice enforces muscle memory resulting in an easier transition to letter formation and less frustration for new writers. The sheets are meant to be easy enough to ensure success yet challenging enough to hold kids’ interest.
Learning to Form Letters
Once students demonstrate the ability to guide their finger and demonstrate a reasonable degree of control using a writing implement, they are ready to begin forming letters. The reproducible letter sheets present letters using the start spot and arrow students have become familiar with in previous exercises. They begin tracing the letters using their finger. This kinesthetic connection to the alphabet is an important part of understanding the meaning of letters and print on the page.
Writing Their Name
The letters of their name are often the first letters young students try to write. Without direct instruction of how best to form each letter, students often practice incorrectly (sometimes for years!) resulting in inefficient writing habits that are difficult to correct. The Squiggle Squad Name Worksheet Generator is a great way to help students learn to recognize their name. Accompanied by the Squiggle Squad critters, children become familiar seeing their name capitalized and properly spaced giving them a model to trace and copy. Children still working on fine motor skills start with the finger trace version. They can also use this larger sized example to practice writing with a crayon or marker. Copy and laminate this free resource to ensure children practice forming the letters of the name efficient