Rhyming Helps Teach Rhythm

Rhyming teaches children how language works and brings awareness to how words sound.  Rhyming is important for writing, too.  It can help children understand that words that share common sounds often share common letters.  For example, the rhyming words cat and bat both end with –at.

Asking the Right Questions in the Right Way Helps Your Child’s Development

Take advantage of books with beautiful illustrations and ask questions that let your child reply with longer sentences.  Instead of asking “What’s this?” “What color is it?” “Is this a dog or a cat?”, ask things like: “Tell me what’s happening in this picture” or “What are some of the things that this boy could be thinking right now?”  These prompts help develop imagination, fluency and attention to detail.

The Development of Listening Skills Critical to Reading

As children begin to read, they need to learn to identify the sounds that make up words.  This process will lead to phonemic awareness and decoding skills when they go to school.  To help your toddler and preschooler get ready to read, help them identify sounds they hear in the environment.  Choose a time where you can all be quiet and ask them what they hear:  do you hear the cars on the street, the lawnmower, a dog barking?  This simple game helps them isolate sounds in the environment and will train them to eventually isolate letter sounds in words when they’re learning to read!

Early Reading Enhances Chances for Success

Did you know that reading well by 3rd grade determines academic success as well as income later in life?  Help your child do well in school by looking at books and reading together from the time he or she is born.

 

Words are the building blocks of learning

Did you know that children from low-income families enter kindergarten with 3,000 words while children from middle-income families know 20,000?  This will determine how well they learn how to read, so look at books together and talk about the characters, colors, and places you both see.

 

Music is the food of life…

Take advantage of books with beautiful illustrations and ask questions that let your child reply with longer sentences. Instead of asking “What is this?” “What color is it?” “Is this a dog or a cat?”, ask things like: “Tell me what’s happening in this picture” or “What are some of the the things that this boy could be thinking right now?” These prompts help develop imagination, fluency and attention to detail.

Review old favorites…

This week, talk to your child about books that you’ve read together. If you read, We’re Going On a Bear Hunt, ask questions about all the places the family had to go through. Doing this helps children with memory but more importantly, the sequences of events: what happened first, next, and last.

ABC

Sing the Alphabet song (“Abc song”) with your child and play with plastic letters. Children learn the names of each letter while singing, letter shapes by drawing and playing with letters, and the sounds each make when they recite rhymes. The combination of all these strategies will help your child develop the basics of reading and writing.

Holiday Inspiration.

Use the holiday season to inspire literacy activities with your child.   Many families will be celebrating Thanksgiving this week. This creates an opportunity to talk with your child about things for which you are thankful and encourage your child to do the same. This week also offers an opportunity to start a family tradition. Use one of the activities included in the calendar below or create your own.

Keep on Reading!

Try reading a book with your child and leave a blank at the end of the sentence for them to complete. A good way to do it, is by using predictable books with repetition, for example: “Chica Chica Chica Boom Boom, will there be enough _______?” Let your child fill in the blank with the word “room. This helps children learn how language works, which is the basis of learning how to read and write!