Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Gingerbread Man Poster...and early literacy skills.

I've started introducing Q to the concept of words as a unit--ie: one spoken word equals one written word. I haven't done any direct instruction on this, rather I find times to point to the words as I say them--just using modeling to introduce this literacy concept. This is a delicate task, though, because I don't want to overwhelm her or take the joy out of just listening to reading aloud by turning it into work. Typically I point to each word when reading titles of books as we begin them. I read/point the title first, then I ask her to do it. If she has trouble, I help by guiding her finger and saying the words. When I am reading the actual story, I don't typically point to words for children her age.
Another great opportunity to point to words is on posters and signs. They are typically short (in length) and the words are written in large letters.
I wrote out the chant from The Gingerbread Man and Quinn helped me glue on her previously-made gingerbread men. Then we found a fox picture (at her request) on the internet, traced it onto red paper and we each cut out a fox. Can you tell which fox belongs to each of us? :)

(Sidenote--I am doing a lot of parallel work with Quinn at this point--for most of the art or writing we do, we each make our own. That way I can model how to complete the work while still giving her the freedom and independence to do her own thing, only helping if she requests or really is having a hard time.)

During our daily "circle time" we use a pointer (spatula, wooden spoon, ruler, chopstick...depending on what we decide for that day) to point to the words as we read the poster together.

I've noticed her using the poster to "teach" her babies when she's playing on her own in the playroom. She is not yet correctly matching one-to-one with written and spoken word, but she is beginning to grasp the concept that the written words somehow mean the same thing as the ones she's saying aloud, which is a great first step!
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