Alphabet Activities: Washing the Letter Dishes

We continue our outdoor summer fun this month for our Playful Preschool Series .  The theme this week is water.  We have a fun and wet alphabet activity to share.

Alphabet Activities

Alphabet activities should be fun and playful.  Kids will have fun learning their ABCs in this water play activity!

Full Disclosure:  This post contains affiliate links.

Why We Chose This Activity

Water, water, water…my son can not get enough of playing with water. Whether it is playing with the hose outside or splashing in the bathtub, he could spend hours being wet.

As you probably know, I believe that we should build off our kids interests and meet them where they are.

So we came up with this washing the letter dishes. Water play meets the alphabet!

Setting Up

Materials needed:water table or two dishwashing containers, drying rack or towel, rag or sponge, water, soap, plastic dishes and silverware and washable markers

  1. Fill one container with soapy water. The second container will be filled with clean water for your rinse bin.
  2. Place the bins in a row followed by the drying rack or towel.
  3. On each plastic dish or utensil write a letter of the alphabet with a marker.  To create tough stains use a crayon to write the letters!

abc dishes for the alphabet activity

Time to Play

washing the ABC dishes

Pick up an item to wash and name the letter on the utensil or dish. Wash the letter off in the soapy water, rinse, dry and repeat!

Alphabet activities: water play washing the ABC dishes

Kids can also work on letter sounds. Include saying the letter sound before washing the letter off the object.

You could also write sight words instead of letters to differentiate for other kids.


10 Outdoor Alphabet Activities

The Snail and the Whale Water Bin

ABC Water Park

See more #playfulpreschool ideas for water learning below.

Alphabet Hunt in a Water Sprinkler by Mom Inspired Life

Turn Your Water Bottles into Musical Instruments by Life Over C’s

Pie Tin Boats – an engineering challenge for the whole family by Rainy Day Mum

Making a Solar Still-a Water Desalination Experiment by Capri + 3

Water Displacement Experiment by Fun-A-Day

Gross Motor Water Play and Learning by Tiny Tots Adventures

Drip, Drip, Drop | Ourdoor Water Game for Kids by The Educators’ Spin On It

About Jodie Rodriguez

Jodie Rodriguez is a mom of two young boys and an early childhood/elementary educator with over 18 years of experience. Jodie's passion is helping parents, teachers, librarians and anyone else interested in nurturing our youngest readers.


  1. I love this – and I know my kids would love it as well. Preparing it for after preschool this afternoon. Thank you for the inspiration.

  2. This is fantastic. My kids like to help wash dishes. We can use our applesauce containers!

  3. Danielle says:

    Wonderful idea! My son would have so much fun with this.

  4. This is perfect for them little ones who beg to wash dishes. Love this idea!


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  4. […] up a tub and wash the letter dishes. (Growing Book by […]