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Early Literacy & You

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Megan Kovalaske

on 9 June 2016

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Transcript of Early Literacy & You

Early Literacy & You
Working with
Pre-Talkers, Talkers & Pre-readers
About early literacy, and how you
can best impact your child's early
literacy skills.
Early literacy is what children know about reading and writing before they can read and write.
What is “early literacy?”

Early literacy is not the teaching of reading. It is simply providing a strong basis so that when children are taught to read in school, they are ready, or have the necessary skills and tools, to learn.
35% of children in the U.S. lack the necessary skills and motivation to succeed in school (Carnegie Foundation Report, 1991)
The economic level of the parents is a strong indicator of the reading and writing ability of their children.
Early acquisition of skills and later academic performance have been proven to be strongly linked.
Some research
on early literacy.

14 Years Old
6 Years Old
At Birth
A child’s brain is wired to learn.
Research shows that the synaptic links in our brains are at their peak around 6 years old.
By the time a child becomes a teenager, they are already losing the synaptic connections which make learning easiest.
By age 6 we are actually the most wired to be able to learn, so what better time is there to be given the skills and tools to enjoy and learn reading?
“For the first 18 months of life, the brain is a learning machine, with no need for context or relevancy for the incoming information.”
Brain development:
18 months to 2 years.
100,000 years of human reliance on story has evolutionarily rewired the human brain to be predisposed to think in story terms and to use story structure to create meaning and to make sense of events and others’ actions.
From Story Proof: the science behind the startling power of story by Kendall Haven, 2007
By this age, children have nearly formed the maximum number of synapses they will ever have in their brains.
They are primed to absorb the skills necessary to learn reading.
Brain development:
4 to 5 years - pre-readers.
Read and talk about books with the children you care for.
Incorporate the following 6 Pre-Reading Skills into your reading time, and other daily activities.
How can you help develop early literacy?
Print Motivation
Print Awareness
Letter Knowledge
Narrative Skills
Phonological Awareness
The 6 Pre-Reading Skills.
Working with early talkers (& younger) – birth to age 2.
Read to your child-this is the single most important activity to do; retell stories, read with expression, share rhymes.
Writing helps children learn about print, letters, phonological awareness, vocabulary and narrative skills. Encourage your child to scribble, draw shapes, color and draw.
singing and writing are especially effective at developing letter knowledge, phonological awareness and vocabulary.
Play is a way children can learn all six skills. Play matching ans sorting games, act out stories, play with puzzles, clap out words or play with blocks and shapes.
Talking with children also helps develop all six skills. Encourage children to retell stories, point out signs, make observations, say nursery rhymes and talk about color, shapes and sizes.
Read, talk and sing to your children.
Working with talkers – ages 2-3.
The actual process of simply speaking or reading to a child at this age is valuable in and of itself.

Research at the University of Chicago found that there is a direct correlation between the amount parents/caregivers talk to children and the vocabulary growth of those children.

Children who received a high level of speech had a vocabulary level 5 times higher by age 2 than those who received a low level of speech.
At this age, it is time to extend the usage of the 6 skills a bit more by expanding upon their usage.

Children ages 2-3 have generally developed enough language to begin carrying on simple conversations. They are learning vocabulary at a tremendous rate and are picking up parts of speech to form more complete sentences. They enjoy having books read to them and may pretend to “read” as they look through familiar books.
Dialogic reading is an active, participatory, style of reading designed to engage the child.
Dialogic reading is a process that allows you to help a child develop the 6 Pre-Reading Skills.
Dialogic reading?
Active, not passive.
More than just reading to a child, but engaging the child with the process of reading, and thinking about what is being read.
As simple as having a child name the colors of objects in a book, or as complex as having them try to determine what will happen next, or why something is happening.
Increase the complexity of the dialogic reading methods used as the age of a child increases.
Dialogic reading is...
Ask open-ended questions, not “yes/no” questions.
Ask “what” and “why” questions.
Give the child plenty of time to respond with an answer.
Expand upon a child’s answer with another question, dig deeper.
If the child doesn’t have an answer, provide one and have them repeat it. Follow up with another question.
Provide continuous encouragement and praise.
Dialogic reading: a “how-to” guide.
Point to frog or other animal and say “What’s this?”
Confirm, praise/encourage: “Yes ,that’s right, it is a frog!”
Expand: provide more information: “It is a frog! A green, jumping frog!”
Explore further: “What sound does a frog make?”
Dialogic reading, an example.
Simply "receiving"
input from the TV
Actively engaging
with the video game
So, how can you help?
Working with pre-readers – ages 4-5.
Continue working on the 6 Pre-Reading Skills and continue using dialogic reading, but:
Focus on Phonological Awareness.
Most children who have a hard time reading and learning to read have a problem with the Phonological Awareness skill.
Continue with singing songs and nursery rhymes. Emphasize the syllables. Use songs such as “Willowby, Wallowby, Woo.”
Play games, such as “I Spy”:
“I spy something that rhymes with ‘cat’.”
Willowby, Wallowby, Woo
An elephant sat on you.
Willowby, Wallowby, Wee
An elephant sat on me!

Make up your own rhymes like this:
Willowby, Wallowby, Wary
An elephant sat on Mary.
Willowby, Wallowby, Wuzzle
An elephant played with a puzzle.
Willowby, Wallowby, Weetah
An elephant ran with a cheetah!
In addition to those mentioned here, there are many other things you can do to positively impact your child's early literacy skills.

Learn more by asking a TCPL staff member!
TCPL… is here to help you.
121 Fair Ave. NW, New Philadelphia, OH 44663

YOU are instrumental
to the process of increasing your
child's early literacy skills.

The primary individuals in a child’s life, whether they are parents or other caregivers, are instrumental in the process of developing early literacy.
These individuals spend the most time with a child, and thus have the greatest impact, upon a child’s development.
Other individuals, such as librarians, can only do so much. That is why we offer programs and workshops at the Tuscarawas County Public Library designed to help parents and caregivers gain the necessary skills to help their children.
Tuscarawas County Public Library
At birth-babies link voice with face, and study facial expression and emotion.
By one year-babies understand sequential actions and expected behavior, and have mastered the concepts of goals and motives. They understand wants and how to act to satisfy those wants.
Emotions heavily influence development. In addition, emotion enhances memory. Early interactions have a decisive impact upon later development, if it is a positive interaction, the development will also be positive.
Brain development:
Birth to 1 year.
At eighteen months-babies understand desire, goals, conflict in the name of goal pursuit, and cause-and-effect sequencing and connections between events.
What does that sound like? A story.
Even from age 18 months, children are understanding in context of story.
Willowby, Wallowby, Woo.
Page from Jump Frog Jump! by Robert Kalan
Full transcript