Writing is another important literacy skill and children need lots of opportunities. Strengthening those little hands and making it fun to write are important aspects of enhancing writing skills. Important brain connections are being made between visual, kinesthetic, and other literacy concept developments. Writing also integrates many developmental domains. The ability to understand that
It’s great to know our letters, to know the sounds the letters make, to know that we turn pages right to left, and to write the letters of our name…but we cannot forget how PRICELESS comprehension is! Comprehension involves listening, thinking about what we’ve heard read, and communicating those thoughts. It’s what a child will need the rest of his life to make sense of what he or she will read in texts, assignments, projects, digital pages and documents, and on and on. As teachers, it means we need to learn how to ask good questions that do two things: inform us of the child’s understanding and encourages the child to think about he/she has read. The only requirement for these questions is that they be open-ended…questions that elicit more than one or two word responses….for example, questions that begin with how, what else, what if, what might, or what do you think? Here are some ideas to build comprehension skills while your outdoors!
1. Act out favorite stories
2. Read stories outside about nature, then have them look for similar things book is about.
3. Challenge children to dictate a story about a field trip, a special visitor outside adventure, watching an animal or traffic.
4. Demonstrate actions or sounds from an earlier story reading. “Show me what happened to the duck”, “Show me what the flea did”.
5. Act out nursery rhymes such as “Hickory Dickory Dock”.
6. Act out songs such as “Row Row Row your Boat”.
7. Information books: Ask them to recall what the book said about an “outdoor” topic—leaves, for example—Ask them to find something that was in the book.
8. Read a book under a shady tree.
· Ask prediction questions such as “What do you think will happen next?”, “What do you think this book is about”?
· Ask recall questions such as “What happened when the bears came home?” or “What was this book about?” or “What happened first/second/next/last?”.
· Ask opinion questions such as “What do you think little bear felt?” or “What would you do if that happened to you?”
(click on each book to find out more information!)
Woodland Riddles and Pet Riddles both provide great information about animals appropriate for children…but did you know there are conversational extenders on each animal page that supports the teacher in asking great questions? Check it out! You and your children will love the many ways to learn in both of these books.
I hope you have enjoyed my “new” blog . Please let me hear from you. Let me know what you think. Do you have other ideas to share? Also, I’d love to hear about other early childhood topics that you would like more information!