Classroom printables, activities & worksheets

Letter Recognition

Letter recognition is a core component of early literacy education, and if you're on the hunt for letter recognition worksheets and games, you're in luck. The Teach Starter team of teachers has put together the ultimate guide to teaching students to recognize the letters of the alphabet — both uppercase and lowercase — along with curriculum-aligned teaching resources to make your lesson planning easy.

  • What is letter recognition?
  • Is it part of the science of reading?
  • And how do you teach students to recognize letters?
Read on for tips and resources from our expert teacher team!

What Is Letter Recognition and Why Is it Important?

New to teaching early readers? It may have been a while since you were working your way through the ABCs with a classroom full of students, but that's OK! Our expert ELA teachers have got your back! (Feel free to skip ahead to the printables and digital Google Slide templates if you've already got a handle on this information!)  Letter recognition is typically defined as a reader's ability to identify a letter when it's shown to them or to pick out a particular letter from a group of letters. Letter recognition is one of the earliest steps on the journey to becoming a reader and falls within the bounds of teaching using the science of reading pedagogy. It comes even before phonemic or phonological awareness, which involves learning the sounds that different letters and groups of letters make.

How to Teach Letter Recognition

Learning to recognize letters often begins with uppercase letters before students move on to lowercase letters, with a goal of eventually being able to pick out all 26 letters in the alphabet in both uppercase and lowercase form. It's also helpful to start off with the letters students will see most as they begin to combine letters into simple words such as S, A, T, P, I, and N before moving on to other letters of the alphabet. An easy letter introduction path to follow is:
  • s, a, t, i, p, n
  • c, k, e, h, r
  • m, d, g, o
  • l, f, b, q, u
  • j, z, w
  • v, y, x
Looking for lesson planning ideas to improve letter recognition in your class? Explore alphabet activities, letter games, and more in this collection of teacher-curated resources! Each resource has undergone a thorough review by a member of the Teach Starter team to ensure it's been fact-checked, spell-checked, and follows the latest teaching trends. All you have to do is download and add to your lesson plans!

32 of 68 teaching resources for those 'aha' moments