The Moveable Alphabet is a material that opens the world of putting thoughts into writing for children. Maria Montessori observed children experience a sensitive period for language from birth to the age of 6. The sensitive period for writing is around age 4. With a strong foundation in letter sounds and phonological awareness, a child is ready to work with the Moveable Alphabet.
When presented with the Moveable Alphabet, the same cursive letters the child worked with using sandpaper letters are readily found in a big, beautiful box of wooden, cut-out letters. The child discovers how putting the sounds together creates familiar word sounds. For example, “c-a-t is cat”.
The Moveable Alphabet is used in many ways. One way it is used is with miniature objects. The child’s teacher expertly guides the child through sound combinations and language rules. The child spells with the knowledge he or she has. As the child’s knowledge grows, so does spelling accuracy. Soon the child can write sentences using the Moveable Alphabet, a skill not reachable by pencil for months to come.
By working with concrete letters to create words and thoughts, the children practice word construction. When they are presented with their first reading books, the children apply this mental muscle and understanding for reading success!