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!