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The BEST Summer Alphabet Activity - ABC Ice Boats

Here is a fun, low-prep alphabet activity for toddlers and preschoolers using ice.  It's the perfect way to sneak in learning on hot summer days, but is fun to play with all year round!

Beat the summer heat AND work on letter recognition with these Alphabet Ice Boats!  

My toddler, preschooler, and 7 year old loved this icy alphabet activity.  Any activity involving water is a hit around here!!  My kiddos love a chance to splash around, and in all their splish-splashing they didn't realize the were working on recognizing the letters of the alphabet!

Set it up on a hot day or in a large pan inside!

alphabet ice boat activity for toddlers
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Often our activities are intended for one of my kiddos, but the others don't want to be left out in the fun and end up participating, too.  Not sure if it has anything to do with homeschooling or not, but being that my kiddos are together all day, every day-- it gives us plenty of chances to play and explore together-- just like this activity did.

Alphabet Activity for Toddlers and Preschoolers


To prep this fun alphabet activity with a unique sensory twist, you'll need:
I purchased a foam alphabet from The Dollar Store a few years ago and used it for this activity, however some other type of plastic letter manipulative would work, too {like the letters we used in our alphabet egg hunt activity}.

How to Make Alphabet Ice Boats


Fill up your ice cube trays with the foam alphabet.  

Add a tiny bit of water in each tray so that each letter will freeze with the water.  
Add it to the freezer and check back in a few hours.  

Once frozen pull the trays back out and fill the trays with more water.  

Next, cover the ice cube trays with aluminum foil and poke a craft stick in each ice cube compartment.  

Add foam triangle stickers to the craft sticks for your sail.  Place trays back in the freezer.

making alphabet ice boats

After a few hours, it is time to let your alphabet ice boats set sail!

Prep your kids for this activity by having them put the foam alphabet mat in abc order; this is the  perfect time to sing the ABC's!  My toddler & preschooler love belting out this song!

When the mat is assembled, pop the ice boats out of the trays and add them to your water table.

alphabet ice boats activity for toddlers

After a few minutes our ice boats started to melt and we were able to rescue the letters and added them to the alphabet mat for a matching activity!

alphabet activity for toddlers

Do you have a fun way to beat the summer heat and work on letter recognition this summer? Pleae share!
alphabet activity for toddlers - abc ice boats

More fun hands-on alphabet activities for toddlers & preschoolers: