Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Let's Talk Early Literacy

It's not too soon! Learning to read and write is essential to school success. Children who are proficient readers are usually the most successful learners. The Public Library Association's (www.pla.org/earlyliteracy.htm) "Every Child Ready to Read" Program explains that children who are read to from an early age have more advanced language skills, a larger vocabulary, and a greater interest in books at age 4. At this age, a child's interest in reading is an important predictor of later reading achievement.

It needs to be fun and interactive! In promoting early literacy in 2 and 3 year olds, the "Dialogic Reading" or the "Hear and Say" method is very effective. With Dialogic Reading, adults help tell the story. The adult becomes the questioner, the listener , and the audience. Research has shown the children can jump ahead several months in learning after only a few weeks of Dialogic Reading. How to do it?

When reading aloud, ask "what" questions:
-Ask open -ended questions about the pictures and if your child does not 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 on what your child says keeping the expansions short and simple, have your child repeat your longer phrases
-Ask general questions to help your child say more such as "What do you see on this page?", "What is happening here?", "What else do you see?"
-Relate the story to your child's own experiences
-Add description to the story
-Help your child as needed
-Praise and encourage
-Follow your child's interest
-Have fun with your child! Your excitement and enthusiasm is contagious!

Please join us for storytimes:
Wee Ones (Birth to 15 months) Mondays 9:30 to 10:15am
Toddlers (16 months to 2 1/2 years old) Tuesday, Thursday or Friday 9:30 to 10:15am
Threes, More or Less (2 1/2 to 3 1/2) Tuesday or Friday, 10:30 to 11:15am
Family Storytime (5 and under) Mondays and Thursdays, 10:30 to 11am

Call us about registrations. Adults included in all of the above programs.

Carla Vastine

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