Ella is a pretty competent reader for her age. However, she’s having trouble distinguishing between the “b” and “d” letters.

I thought I’d ask some mums if they’d had the same issue – and plenty have. Even more had tips to help me teach her the difference. Knowing there are probably plenty more mums out there scratching their head over this one, I thought I’d share.

Here are the suggestions given:

Bat before ball. Drum before drumstick

B and D letters 2
The idea behind this is to draw a baseball bat (or whatever bat your child might associate with) and then a ball. The bat and ball make the shape of a “b’’. Similarly with the drum, the round drum first, then the long, thin drumstick. The drum and drumstick make the shape of a “d’’.

A couple of people mentioned their children often still struggled with getting the bat and ball and the drum and drumsticks in the right order.

Knuckles together make a bed – b-e-d

B and D letters
This is a quick and easy way for children to learn the difference – and spell a new word at the same time. Although, Ella hasn’t quite mastered keeping her knuckles together! Make “thumbs up’’ with both hands, then put your knuckles together, with thumbs still raised in the air. This makes the shape of a bed. Trace letters “b’’ on one side and “d’’ on the other for your child to see.

Ella picked this one up easier than the bat and ball. She now quickly puts her “bed hands’’ together when she’s trying to determine between the “b’’ and “d’’ letters. Although, she’s asked about 10 times: “where’s the e?’’

While Ella certainly struggles in other areas, I feel pretty blessed she is a keen reader and writer – to the point of pestering me to teach her more.

Next week I’ll share some of the things we’ve done to encourage her reading and writing.

How have you taught your child to learn the difference between b and d? What tricks have you used?

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7 Responses to Teaching your child the difference between the b and d letters

  1. Rachel says:

    Thanks – they were great suggestions – I have just been persevering hoping my son would eventually get it – now I have some tools 🙂

    • Good luck with it, Rachel. I hope they help. The knuckles one has worked a treat with Ella. Even tonight, we were reading and she stopped to put her knuckles together to work out whether it was a b or d!

  2. Lisa Wood says:

    Oh I am so going to take on board the Thumbs for the letter b and d with the e in the middle for our youngest son – he is learning to understand bigger words but still gets the “B” and “D” around the wrong way 🙂

    Thanks Kellie for sharing xxx
    Lisa Wood recently posted..Travelling The Right WayMy Profile

  3. Wow!. This is great suggestions. You have a great ideas. Thanks for sharing this blog post..
    Junalin @ Doula Training recently posted..Is A Doula Right For Me?My Profile

  4. Shweta says:

    It’s great..it’s wow…it was a nightmare to make my 5 year old daughter understand the difference between b and d thanks thanks for sharing. I think we can work something like this for p and q …what do you suggest?

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