What reading experts say:
Letter recognition is an important prerequisite to learning to read. Successful beginning readers have a good knowledge of the alphabet, know letter names and understand that letters represent sounds.
Draw your child's attention to the visual form of individual letters in many different ways that are fun for you and your child.
Being able to recognize and name letters of the alphabet at entry into kindergarten is a strong predictor of reading ability in 10th grade. Ehri, L. and McCormick, S. Phases of word learning: Implications for instruction with delayed and disabled reader, Reading and Writing Quarterly.
What good readers know:
Good readers understand that letters are different from one another and that each letter has a name and its own distinct sound. In Straight Talk About Reading, authors Susan L. Hall and Louisa C. Moats say that most educators recommend teaching the letter name first, then the letter shape and finally the letter sound.
To be ready to read, children should know the alphabet song, upper case and most lower case letters and know the sounds each letter makes.
What parents can do to help children Grow Up Reading™:
Tell your child a story about your first day of school. Be expressive. Use new words your child does not know. Ask questions and respond to your child's answers.
Read five books from the "Talking" booklist. Remember to make a tally mark for each book. Do this every month!
Go to a Library program like "Saturday Morning Live" or "Pajama Storytime." Find program schedules at www.WB-Buzz.org
Play "I Spy" with numbers on the calendar. Say, "I Spy with my little eye, a number that is more than 8 but less than 10."
Activities - Talking:
- Have your child tell you a story. Many children this age are working on storytelling abilities such as adding detail and creating a conclusion and a main theme of the story. The developing ability to tell a good story is important for comprehension as well as for writing process, imagination and creativity.
- Talk to your child about the past, present, and future. Provide your child with opportunities for using the past tense and future tense such as field trips, family events, outings or a trip. Keep a calendar of events for your child to recognize and stimulate these discussions.
- Preschool and kindergarten aged children ask many questions. Make the most of your child’s vibrant imagination and extend your conversation with questioning skills. “What was your favorite part of school today?” “What did you do during work time today?” Questioning skills and conversations help your child practice grammar skills, cause and effect relationships, conversational skills, recall skills and making predictions.
More Great Books to Read(click on a title to check for availability at the Library)