Every Child Ready to Read @ your library® Early Literacy Workshop Five Little Ducks Five little ducks went out one day, Over the hills and far away. Mother Duck said, “Quack, quack, quack, quack." But only 4 little ducks came back. Four little ducks . . . Three little ducks . . . Two little ducks . . . One little duck . . . Well, sad Mother Duck went out one day, Over the hills and far away, Mother Duck said, "Quack, quack, quack." And all of the 5 little ducks came back. QUACK! QUACK! QUACK! QUACK! EARLY LITERACY Early literacy is what children know about reading and writing before they can actually read or write. Synaptic Density Rethinking the Brain handout From Rethinking the Brain: New Insights into Early Development by Rima Shore (NY: Families and Work Institute, 1997) Synaptic Density: Synapses are created with astonishing speed in the first three years of life. For the rest of the first decade, children’s brains have twice as many synapses as adults’ brains. (Drawing supplied by H.T. Chugani) Early Literacy Research Handout Rethinking the Brain OLD THINKING NEW THINKING How a brain develops depends on the genes you are born with. How a brain develops hinges on a complex interplay between genes you are born with and the experiences you have. The experiences you have before age three have a limited impact on later development. Early experiences have a decisive impact on the architecture of the brain, and on the nature and extent of adult capacities. A secure relationship with a primary caregiver creates a favorable context for early development and learning. Early interactions don’t just create a context; they directly affect the way the brain is “wired.” Brain development is linear: the brain’s capacity to learn and change grows steadily as an infant progresses toward adulthood. Brain development is non-linear: there are prime times for acquiring different kinds of knowledge and skills. A toddler’s brain is much less active than the brain of a college student. By the time children reach age three, their brains are twice as active as those of adults. Activity levels drop during adolescence. YOU are your child’s first teacher • Children begin to get ready to read long before they start school. • Parents & teachers know their children best. • Children learn best by doing things, and love to do things with YOU. • Young children often have short attention spans and enjoy repeating favorite activities. • YOU know your children well and can take advantage of times when the child is “in the mood,” ready to learn. WHAT IS EARLY LITERACY? SIX SKILLS TO GET READY TO READ • • • • • • Print Motivation Phonological Awareness Vocabulary Narrative Skills Print Awareness Letter Knowledge Print Motivation child’s interest in and enjoyment of books Children who enjoy books and reading will read more. Children become good readers by practicing. Phonological Awareness the ability to hear and play with the smaller sounds in words helps children sound out words as they begin to read Language of Literacy Phoneme The smallest part of spoken language that makes a difference in the meaning of words. English has about 41 phonemes. The word “if” has two phonemes (/i/ /f/). The word “check” has three phonemes (/ch/ /e/ /ck/). Sometimes one phoneme is represented by more than one letter. Phonemic Awareness The ability to hear, identify, and manipulate the individual sounds (phonemes) in spoken words. Phonological Awareness The understanding that spoken language is made up of individual and separate sounds. A broad term that includes phonemic awareness in addition to work with rhymes, words, syllables, and beginning sounds. Grapheme The smallest part of written language that represents a phoneme in the spelling of a word. A grapheme may be just one letter, such as b, f, p, s, or several letters such as ch, sh, ea, igh. Phonics The understanding that there is a predictable relationship between phonemes (the sounds of the spoken language) and graphemes (the letters and spellings that represent those sounds in written language). Syllable A word part that contains a vowel or, in spoken language, a vowel sound. From Put Reading First: The Research Building Blocks for Teaching Children to Read, U.S. Department of Education, 2001. Downloadable at National Institute for Literacy www.nifl.gov Say It Slow Say It Fast Puzzle Game Say It Slow/Say It Fast Level 1: Imitation GOAL: To improve your child’s ability to “take words apart” (say it slowly) and put them “back together” (say it fast). STEPS: 1. Choose a two-syllable word puzzle. Show your child the whole picture and say word. Have your child imitate the word. 2. Break word apart; say it slowly. Separate the two pieces as you say the word again slowly. 3. Point to each part of the picture as you say the parts. Be sure the picture is facing the child. 4. Ask your child to say each part after you as you hold up piece of picture. When your child says the syllable, hand him or her that piece of the puzzle. 5. Practice saying the word “fast” (normally) and then “slowly” (broken apart) as you take apart and put the puzzle together. 6. After your child can imitate one word this way, practice all the two-syllable words this way, one at a time. Say It Slow/Say It Fast Level 2: Production STEPS 1. Lay out the puzzle of a word that your child has already practiced and say, “Can you say this word slowly?” 2. Take the puzzle apart and ask your child to say the word “broken apart”. Give help as needed. 3. When your child is able to say the words “broken apart” without your help, try some of the following: * * * Lay out three puzzles of two-syllable words that your child has practiced. Mix up the pieces and ask him/her to put the puzzles together and tell you the word normally and broken apart. Lay out three two-syllable word puzzles (put together) and have your child say one of the words slowly while you try to “guess” which one your child is saying. Ask your child to put the words together backwards and make a “silly” word out of it. Introduce the three-syllable word picture puzzles. Letter Day Game Same or different? LETTER-SOUNDS FOR LETTER DAY ACTIVITIES The following is the rough order of sounds as they develop in children’s speech. Start with these letter-sounds: w, p, b, d, t, m, n, h, y Do these letter-sounds last: j, l, r Remember that this activity is teaching your child to listen for the sounds in words. Often alphabet books choose pictures to depict a letter by the way it is spelled not the way it sounds. LetterSound W P B D T M N H Y Sample Words water, worm, wet, window pot, paint, pear, pool boy, bed, bike, ball door, dime, doll, dog toe, toy, truck, tree mop, mail, milk, man net, nap, neck, nose house, hill, horse, head yogurt, yo-yo, yard, yellow LetterSound Sample Words F food, fork, fox, fan V S Z G K C J L violin, van, vase, vacuum sock, soap, sun, spoon zoo, zebra, zipper goat, gate, game, grass kite, kangaroo, king, kiss cat, cake, cookie, car juice, jar, jacks, jelly light, lion, lip, leg R rake, rain, raisin, rock Choosing Books for Two- and Three-Year-Olds • • • • • • • • • • • Board books Books that appeal to senses Wordless picture books Books with rhyme and rhythm Books with repetition Bright, bold, colorful pictures Simple text, familiar situations Follow your child’s interests Simple alphabet books Predictable story Twos need books about real things More Letter Sound Games Read Together Time Handout Helpful Hints Keeping It Fun • Children will enjoy these games most if they are not too easy or too difficult. • Pay close attention to what your child can and cannot do. • Follow your child’s lead. Use toys, books, and words that interest your child. • Have fun! Always stop before you or your child become frustrated. • Be helpful. Praise your child for all efforts even if the answers are not always correct. Teach the correct answer but do not expect perfection. • Do not correct speech errors at this time. The goal is to learn that words can come apart, not perfect speech. • Encourage the whole family to play! ??? ??? Vocabulary 99 Print Awareness noticing print everywhere knowing how we follow the words on a page, knowing how to handle a book helps children feel comfortable with books so they can concentrate on reading Letter Knowledge knowing that letters are different from each other, that they have different names and sounds helps children understand that words are made of smaller parts, and to know the names of those parts Five Easy Steps for Sharing Books With Your Baby Pick the best time Choose a time when you and your baby are in a good mood and ready to enjoy each other. Show Baby the book Point to the pictures, and talk naturally and cheerfully. Talk and have fun Remember to touch and love your baby the whole time. Watch what Baby does Let your baby play with the book if he wants to; and stop for now if he gets upset. Share a book with your baby every day Even just a few minutes a day is important Narrative Skills the ability to describe things and events, and to tell stories helps children understand what they read Three Little Pigs handout Print Motivation Phonological Awareness a child’s interest in and enjoyment of books. Vocabulary the ability to hear and play with the smaller sounds in words. Narrative Skills the ability to describe things and events and to tell stories. knowing the names of things. What you do helps your child get ready to read. Print Awareness noticing print, knowing how to handle a book, and how to follow the written words on a page. Letter Knowledge learning to name letters. Knowing they have sounds, and recognizing them everywhere. Dialogic or “Hear and Say” Reading Picture Book Reading • Picture book reading provides children with many of the skills necessary for school readiness. • How we read to children is as important as how often we read to them. • Children learn more from books when they are actively involved. • Dialogic Reading is a method that helps young children become involved in the story. • You can help your child become an active partner in reading picture books together. Dear Parent Letter Dialogic Reading: “What” Questions • • • • • • Ask “what” questions Follow answers with questions Repeat what your child says Help your child as needed Praise and encourage Follow your child’s interests Dialogic Reading: Open Ended Questions and Expansion Ask open-ended questions about the pictures If your child doesn’t know what to say about a picture, say something and have your child repeat it As your child gets used to open-ended questions, ask your child to say more Expand what your child says Keep the expansions short and simple Have your child repeat your longer phrases Print Awareness noticing print everywhere knowing how we follow the words on a page, knowing how to handle a book helps children feel comfortable with books so they can concentrate on reading Have fun!