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Early Literacy

Early literacy is what children know about communication, language—verbal and non-verbal—reading and writing before they can actually read and write.

Early Literacy Publications and Additional Resources

adult reading to children

Get Children Ready to Read!

Parents are the first to introduce language to their newborn, and they play a vital role in helping children learn to read and write. While it is natural to welcome babies with words of love and to delight in their first cooing sounds, it becomes more difficult when parents and caregivers are asked to read aloud to children every day, ask and answer questions about books and encourage children to write and retell stories. Understanding what skills children need to learn to read and write can help make these tasks easier.

Children should know five pre-reading skills before they start school. Most children acquire these early literacy skills in their first five years. Parents and caregivers help by reading, talking, singing, playing and writing with children every day during daily routines. Your engaging interactions will create a love for language and literacy that will prepare them for the lifetime adventure of reading and writing.

Five Early Literacy Skills

  • Background Knowledge
  • Letter Knowledge
  • Phonological Awareness
  • Print Awareness
  • Vocabulary

The library has many resources for babies, toddlers and preschoolers that will help you think about the skills children need to become fluent readers and writers.

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