When I introduced first words to Eaton I started by teaching him proper sounds of each letter of the alphabet. It was quite easy process and very straightforward.
I was pointing with a finger to a first letter and then follow the whole word
Example: /b/ bus, /c/ cow, /f/ feather
Here is the video of Eaton at 15 months reading sounds of letters.
I want to show you 2 activities and a set of books I presented to Eaton to teach him basic phonics.
I presented that activity to Eaton when he was about 15 moths old.
-it's a great hand activity
-babies can practice sounds of letters
-you can teach babies beginning and ending sounds of the word (that's where we are now)
-later (when they start to write) babies can practice spelling
Whenever I present that activity to Eaton I show him only one word with letters necessary to create that word. Babies have a tendency to play with everything once you show them too many pieces. We still have that activity available on a shelf.
There are words on other side of the wood card. Together 16 words.
2) Spelling fun. I bought that set in Ross for few dollars. The only website I found that available now is Ebay or you can still find that in Ross store.
It's a next step for Eaton to practice phonics as there is no indication what letters to use first. Baby needs to follow a written word that is a little bit more challenging at first. We were practicing that activity about 2 weeks before Eaton started to follow my directions of what letter is first, second and the third. He loves to mix letters just for fun, to make other made up words. So I took my time and I was playing with him during that 2 weeks. Now, he is more consistent with doing that activity properly. And still he has some fun.
Like a name of this activity implies, you can use that game for spelling lessons in the future.
Here is a video of Eaton working with this set of words.
3) This set of books I purchased directly from the website
It is a little bit expensive investment but it is SO worthy. There are 24 books, each book 8 pages long. Beautiful pictures with no background and one short sentence underneath. I presented this set to Eaton when he was one year old. He was grabbing one book by one from a shelf and he wanted me to read it every day for few months. I was really sick of them ;-) but I was following lead of my baby. When I show these books to Eaton now, he reads them perfectly. Great investment! Hope my other future babies will benefit the same way :)