Recognising their Name
The first stage of learning names occurs when children start to recognise them! Young children begin to recognise the shape of their initial letter and often identify that first letter as, "MY NAME". They might find that initial letter in other places (separate from their names), point to it and say, "Look! There's my name" even if its just one letter. In Nursery, we do lots of things to foster children's recognition of their names. We label everything with their names and pictures, identify initial letters, so that they begin to claim ownership of that very important word!
Can you increase the number of places that your child's name appears around the house? It may be on a cup, a placemat at the dinner table, in a book, on their bedroom door or on a basket of toys. Each time their name is visible, point it out and encourage that 'recognition'.
The next step, after children are able to recognise their names, is to begin to spell them orally. We practice this in many ways. A child might be able to recite, “T-o-m” without seeing it written down. Then they will begin to notice each letter.
To practice this you can use name puzzles, scrabble tiles, magnetic letters, letter beads...
When children are comfortable with recognising and spelling their names, the next step is to work on writing their name. Often these steps overlap and work in conjunction with each other!
Give your child lots of opportunities to write their names with chalk, paint, markers, in sensory trays, pens etc. They are also working on strengthening their hand muscles and refining their fine motor skills!