What are Early Literacy Skills?
Early or pre-literacy skills are becoming a hot topic among parents these days, and with the pandemic putting a strain on education, parents are more eager than ever to get a better understanding of the topic and what it means for their little ones. Early literacy is all about language development and nurturing a love for learning in your child. Here’s a basic level explanation of what pre-literacy skills are, and why they’re so important for our children’s journey towards independent, lifelong learning.
Vocabulary development is an early literacy skill that targets speaking, listening, and the recognition of objects in a child’s environment. Focusing on this area of learning will help your child group words and objects into spatially appropriate categories. Creating real world connections with language works to develops a child’s ability to contextualize, name, and retain information and vocabulary more easily.
Phonological awareness/sound play
Phonological awareness relates to our ability to discriminate, remember, and manipulate the various sound structures of language. This applies to words in a sentence or syllables and individual sounds in a single word. This area of learning and skill development is fundamental to a child’s ability to read and write. Helping your child to connect letter sounds to individual letters and even working with them to develop a basic understanding of how to manipulate these sounds will set a strong foundation for their ability to read and write in the future.
Gaining an interest and curiosity about books and print is an important part of pre-literacy skill development in a child. It can springboard into a desire to read and learn on their own. This internal motivation plays a big role during the process of learning to read because the skill does not come easily and takes a lot of effort. If a child is not interested in text on a general level, helping them to find the motivation to learn how to read will become increasingly more difficult.
Structure and sequencing
One of the first language arrangements that a child comes into contact with is the alphabet. This concept of order and sequencing gives a particular structure and patterning to language which can come in handy when a child starts learning to read. Structured approaches to literacy and reading are becoming more and more popular, and they are based on the idea that there are hundreds of patterns and consistencies within language. These can be found within the sequence of the alphabet, patterns of word families, the structure of a sentence, and even the construction of a story or narrative. Focusing on these organized elements of language can help make reading more comprehensive and digestible for our little ones.
Our Early Reader Pack targets each concept of early literacy and works to nurture a love of reading and learning. We've put a ton of thought and care into our Active Reader products so that each element plays a role in the development of our little ones. Stay tuned for our follow-up blog post on specific strategies that you can use in your home to develop and foster the skills within each of area of pre-literacy.