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Which Order Should My Child Learn The Letters?

Hello Everyone!

So where do you start when you are exploring the letters of the alphabet with your child. There are three ways I’d like you to consider and then choose what works for your family! Here they are:


1. Personally Important Letters


If your child is just starting out on their journey of learning the letter names and sounds, I would highly recommend you start learning letters that are important to them. So the first one might be the first letter in their name. Then you might look at ‘m’ for mum, ‘d’ for dad, ‘n’ for nan, ‘g’ for grandad and the first letters of any brothers or sisters or close friends and relatives.

Starting with letters that are personally significant means the letters mean something to your child. My suggestion would be to take photos of the people and things that are important to your child, print the off, write the whole word (for example  ‘Mum’) and put these photos up somewhere your child can see them (the fridge is a good spot). Then two things might happen – you can point out all of the first letters and there’s a chance, if you point and say the words enough, your child may start to ‘read’ these words – child genius!


2. Alphabetical Order


Teaching your child the letter names and sounds in alphabetical order is one way many parents go. There is something to be said for routine and your child knowing that next time we will do b, then c, then d. It also makes it easier for you to get your head around – just do the next letter and you know you have covered all of them.





If your child knows a few of the letters and is ready to start reading then I would suggest SATPIN to you. What is this you ask?


S, a, t, p, i and n are the first six letters I teach to the children in my class who are just about to start to learn to read.




Well, these letters and more importantly the sound they make, appear in many basic ‘sound out’ words. So not only can I teach the letter names and sounds, we can start to put them altogether in words. So with SATPIN we can make at, sat, pat, pan, tan, tin, pin, sin, tap and sap. A good start to reading!


After this, I tend to stick to a rough order of introduction but I will change the order if it’s better to do another letter because it relates to something we are doing in class. I tend to do a similar order recommended by the UK government called Letters and Sounds and another programme called Jolly Phonics. This order helps with reading basic three letter words (consonant – vowel- consonant words).


 So I’d do the letters in this order (give or take):


s a t p i n m d g o c k  e r u b h f  l   j w  v x y z q


If your child is ready I’d also do these things:

* when taking about ‘s’ I’d also talk about ‘ss’

* when talking about ‘c’ and ‘k’, I’d talk about ‘ck’

* when talking about ‘f’ I’d talk also talk about ‘ff’

* when talking about ‘l’ I’d also talk about ‘ll’

* when talking about z I’d also talk about ‘zz’

* when talking about ‘q’ I’d chat about how ‘q’ and ‘u’ usually sit next to each other in words


Then if your child can automatically recall all of the letter names and sounds of the alphabet they are ready to move on to learning:


sh ch th ng


and a whole pile of vowel combinations (digraphs) like ee oo and ai.


So I’d love you to consider all of these options and which way you think would work best for your child. If you have any specific questions please send them to


Next time I will be sharing some terrific alphabet resources you can find on the internet. So if you haven’t already, please sign up to my newsletter so you won’t miss a thing!

Until next time,

Happy Reading!








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