As we move forward with our new strategic plan, we are already stepping up and delivering on one of its key goals: Early Literacy Support.
The building blocks of literacy and language are said to form in the first three years of a child’s life. Reading to or with a child helps form connections within the brain that are key to understanding how printed words work, to building a vocabulary, and for increasing general knowledge. It is important to build and develop the process of reading before kindergarten so children are not only able to read before the first day of school but are also prepared to learn.
The six skills for early literacy development are:
- Letter Knowledge
Understanding that letters are different from each other and knowing letter names and sounds.
TIP: Look for alphabet books and shape books (because letters are built on shapes).
- Narrative Skills
Being able to tell stories and describe things and events.
TIP: Look for books that provide opportunities to have your child explain what is happening in the book and/or infer meaning from visual cues.
- Phonological Sensitivity
Being able to hear and play with the smaller sounds that make up words. Understanding that letters are different from each other and knowing letter names and sounds.
TIP: Look for books that feature rhyming text, a sing-song rhythm, and/or sound words like tweet, vroom, kerplunk, boom, or splat.
- Print Awareness
Noticing print everywhere (not just in books), understanding that print has meaning, and knowing how to handle a book and follow print on a page.
TIP: Look for books with whimsical text or bold, easy-to-identify printed words as well as stories that demonstrate the organization and sequence of reading a story or list.
- Print Motivation
Being interested in and enjoying books.
TIP: Look for interactive books, books with bright illustrations or photos, and/or very funny or relatable stories.
Knowing the names of things.
TIP: Look for books that identify objects and use new and interesting words.
Early Literacy Programming @BCPL
Our early literacy programs are designed to help kids develop early literacy skills while modeling useful techniques for parents and caregivers. We aim to teach children about storytelling, good listening and conversation skills, being part of a group, and more.
Upcoming early literacy events include:
- Nutcracker Family Storytime Children of All Ages
- Saturday Storyhour Ages 3–5
- Storytime Ages 3–5
- Toddler Time Ages 0–2
- Underwear Everywhere! Ages 3–6
It’s Never Too Late to Build Literacy Skills!
Some Bunny to Read To iss a new program for emerging, struggling, and reluctant readers of all ages! Studies show that children who read aloud on a regular basis can achieve drastic improvements in their reading skills, and older kids and adults can benefit too.
Each month at Lebanon Junction Branch Library, the folks from the Bun Bun Brigade will bring in their fluffy friends to hear some stories and get some cuddles. Human participants get to read a book of their choice to a new bunny friend, and the bunnies provide a safe, encouraging presence for readers. Sharing books with furry supporters helps kids to:
- Sustain concentration and focus;
- Increase reading comprehension;
- Expand their use of vocabulary and language;
- Boost confidence and pride in their reading skills;
- Cultivate a higher motivation for reading and learning;
- Foster positive social interactions;
- Feel more comfortable about school and learning; and
- Enjoy the experience of reading.