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Thursday, March 16, 2017

Trace & Learn: Digital printables for Children

     I wanted to write a litte about how I came to create the Trace & Learn printables.  I have been an early childhood educator for 17 years, the last 9 year of my career I have been a Family Day Care Educator, and It has been a great experience for me and I am so very grateful and very blessed to have had this opportunity.

      In the beginning of my Family Day Care journey, I had a gorgeous family cross my path and I had the wonderful opportunity to look after their precious little girl. One day as mum came to pick up her child she noticed we were enjoying some drawing and colouring in time, while chatting she just so happened to mention how in India (where she was from) the children there started school at the age of 3 (this was at around 2009 so I am unsure if this has changed since then) I was actually taken aback couldn't believe it. She then proceeded to show me how they gave the children there a little heads up when it came to writing their names. She told me that the children would start either with their name (which engages the child) or the alphabet. She began writing her child's name using a succession of dots so that she could trace around her name and would be able to practice using this method until she would be able to eventually write her name on her own.

     I was amazed and couldn't believe that such an easy process could really impact and help children and at such a young age. Not being a kindergarten  teacher however, I was a little hesitant. But thinking this might actually help the children in my care, in the long run, I thought I would give it a go.  As long as the children were willing and eager to also give it a go and seeing as they were around the age of 3 I thought why not give it a try.
     So with a marker I proceeded to write out the children's name with dots so they would have something to trace, I also decided to just plainly print out their name in 2 different sizes at the top of the page so that with time they could eventually identify the letters in their name, as i thought just their names in dots might confuse the children. 
     I then showed the children in my care their names I had written up and asked if they'd like to give it a go and try writing their name? and they were very excited to do so!  Of course, at first they had a little trouble but with my encouragement and when needed my help, they persevered until they were able to do it them self!  Oh, how excited and proud they were when they accomplished this.
Rosie feeling pretty excited thats she can write the letters in her name!
     It is a lengthy process and patience is needed but as long as the child wanted to practice, I was willing to print out another copy of the original for them. Also most of these children were in my care until they were 4 or 5 so they had plenty of time to practice when they chose to (sometimes they would even ask me if they could do it).  By the time they were ready for school, most of the children were able to write their own names.  I was so excited for them and proud of their accomplishments. Knowing that I had a little part in this and was able to help them was quite an amazing  feeling.

     Naturally, problems would arise, I would try to think how I could help them to make it easier for them. So along with their names to trace I offered the children the alphabet to trace so that they could get a feel for the other letters too.
First attempt at trying the full alphabet.

       I also put together a shape version to help with different angles and curves (this worksheet was always very popular!)
Picture on the left side show his starting page (on the 30/10/2013) and picture on the  right shows his progress (26/3/2014)

Gracie's attempts and progress until care ceased in 2016, 3  years of age but as you can see she was attempting the letter 'E' on her own! 

This child not only had learnt how to trace and write her own name but she also learnt how to write my name! ツ
(I hope these example can inspire you.)

     Throughout my years in Family Day Care I hand drew each child's name and didn't really think of making a digital version. However my Family Day Care journey had to come to an end in December  2016, and so I decided that I now had  to create a digital version of these work sheets, so that parents and future educators could have access to the printables.  Which I'm happy to say are now available on my Etsy store and also available at

Available at  or also available on my Etsy store. 

Have a Scrapaliciously Delightful Day!! ツ

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