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
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•
•
•
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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
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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!
???
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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
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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!
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Early Literacy Workshop For Two- and Three