As your child embarks on their pre-kindergarten journey, they are expected to reach certain milestones along the way. You might be excited for them to read and write as soon as possible, but your job now is to pave the way for them to be able to discover language and develop it at their own pace. Nevertheless, there are several ways in which you as a parent can aid in the development of later reading and writing skills through reinforcing early literacy skills. Essentially, early literacy skills act as building blocks for those later, more advanced skills. In this article, we will explore what early literacy skills are and what are some of the best ways to help your child achieve them.
Early Literacy is learning about language through letters, their shapes, and sounds. Before a child can read a word, they have to be acquainted with what sound each letter represents and vice versa. In order to relate letters to sounds, it is beneficial that the child already has the required auditory and visual discrimination skills. For example, the shape of the letters ‘b’ and ‘d’ could be easily confused or thought to be the same letter to a child with no visual awareness. As for the similarity between the two sounds /b/ and /p/, it requires that the child have auditory discrimination skills to be able to differentiate between them. At this stage, phonological awareness also starts developing, that is ‘the ability to recognize and work with sounds in spoken language’. At pre-k level, phonological awareness includes the ability to recognize:
Alongside the listening and speaking aspect of early literacy, the child also practices some pre-writing skills, such as the ability to scribble shapes that resemble letters. But how can you make this happen without pressuring the child to read and write?
To read other articles on the pre-k English Language Arts curriculum, check out this catalogue.