Early literacy is a set of six skills that children develop before they are ready to learn to read. From the day they are born, children begin to acquire these skills through listening to speech, engaging with books, seeing words and letters in their environment and interacting with the adults around them. Parents and caregivers can maximize their child's reading readiness by building these skills through five everyday activities: talking, playing, singing, reading and writing.
The Six Skills
Vocabulary: Knowing what words mean.
Print Motivation: Being interested in and enjoying books.
Print Awareness: Understanding that words represent items and concepts; recognizing words in the environment; knowing how books work.
Narrative Skills: Telling stories; relating personal experiences.
Letter Knowledge: Knowing the names of letters and the sounds they make.
Phonological Awareness: Hearing the smaller sounds in words.
The Five Practices
The more words a child hears and understands during the first three years of life, the easier it will be for that child to make sense of written language.
Reading with your child promotes all six early literacy skills. It builds vocabulary by allowing children to hear words that are not used in everyday conversation, demonstrates storytelling... Read More
Singing slows down speech, so children are able to hear the smaller sounds in words. This ability will help children sound out words when they are learning to read. In addition, songs often include rhymes... Read More
Playing with your child provides countless ways to introduce new vocabulary, develop narrative skills and build letter knowledge. Read More
Reading and writing go together. Both are ways to represent spoken words and communicate. You can encourage writing skills through coloring, scribbling, and other activities. Read More