Reading and writing are skills that play a pivotal role in formatting and shaping our everyday experiences. These skills affect everything we do and accomplish in life. Studies have shown that children with a strong literacy foundation become lifelong learners, perform better in schools, develop a strong sense of self and well-being and are more likely to succeed. Researchers are finding that the groundwork for literacy begins as early as day one–from birth.
At Jin-A Child Care Center, we believe in the importance of working together with families to nurture and shape the developing brain. This partnership between caregivers and families offers the best environment for a healthy head start in each child.
On Wednesday, October 19th, Nicole DeNude, professor and mother of 2 Jin-A students, led the workshop on Home School Literacy Link, Part 1. Nicole presented 7 steps of literacy development process, starting from the early stages of life. In this particular class she focused on the first 3 steps including vocabulary, oral language and comprehension.
"Car rides are a great place to practice literacy," said Nicole. Rhyming games, making up stories, and playing I Spy With My Little Eyes, are all effective to enhance vocabulary, oral language, and comprehension.
The grocery store is another excellent time to support literacy development. Parents can use the grocery list to introduce the sounds of different letters and familiarize their children with spelling. Parents can ask engaging questions like: What color is the apple? Where do you think the apples come from? Is the apple big or small? How many apples are in the bag? etc.
Nicole introduced and demonstrated to the parents a research based method of reading called Dialogic reading, which engages children during reading time. Parents can ask probing questions to determine if the content is understood by the child. Parents can ask questions such as: What do you think will happen next? How do you think the character feels? and expand on the child's response. Studies have shown that this technique of reading reinforces language and literacy in the developmental processes of the brain. Diagloic reading cultivates confident readers, enhances comprehension abilities and advances the child's social skills in the future.
The workshop was filled with rich content, involving proven ways children learn. The workshop provided parents with great techniques, tools, and materials to foster literacy in their children. Each family was gifted with a book and games to promote a love of reading in the children at home.
"November 16th is already marked on my Calendar for Part 2!" exclaimed a parent. The general feed back from the parents who attended, expressed how they gained insight and value from the class. Childcare and refreshments will be provided for Part 2, Home School Literacy Link. Again, save the date for November 16th, from 5pm to 6pm. We truly appreciate everyone's time and hope that we can continue providing great resources to support families to advance each child to their full potential. See you there!
Source: Article by National Geographic in their Baby Brain Section called, The First Year. National Geographic, The First Year