How does singing help teach children early literacy skills?
- Our brains are uniquely wired to respond to music, from before the time we are born.
- Because singing is interactive, it involves even the youngest children in language.
- Children learn language through repetition, and as songs are repeated the rhythm of the words is internalized.
- Singing brings a natural awareness of words, as each syllable or sound in a word gets a different note.
- Nursery rhymes and finger plays present a wide vocabulary, and teach sentence structure, story concepts and comprehension.
- The only things we remember word-for-word from our childhoods, are childhood songs and some rhymes!
What are the six early reading skills?
- Vocabulary– Knowing the names of things
- Print motivation– Being interested in and enjoying books
- Print awareness– Noticing print, how to handle a book, how to follow words on a page
- Letter knowledge– Knowing letters are different from each other, knowing their names and sounds
- Narrative Skills– Being able to describe things and events and tell stories
- Phonological awareness– Being able to hear and play with the smaller sounds in words
The process of brain development for reading starts before birth through quiet talking and singing to your baby. It continues after birth through touch, love, eye contact, one-on-one interaction and repetition. The ritual of talking together and sharing books starts early.
Learning to read comes later.
“Picture books nurture kids in many ways. Not only do they expand a child’s mind by showing them things and situations they do not encounter in their world but they are designed to encourage interaction. Sharing a story, being drawn in and listening to the vibration of a voice is physically nurturing. It is comparable and just as necessary as holding a child in your arms and feeding it.”
Author, Leslie Helakoski
This popular children’s program debuted on November 10, 1969 and has helped millions of children learn letters, numbers, colors and much more while visiting Sesame Street.
The show is considered well researched and well written. Generations of children and adults know and love the characters and people from Sesame Street. Ratings are high and the program has been awarded the prestigious Peabody Award for excellence. It has also received dozens of Emmy Awards.
…brought to you by the letter L (for library!)