Literacy development

Literacy: Reading and relaxing

Judith Harries provides ideas for practitioners and parents to keep children reading and developing their literacy skills during the long summer holiday. This can be built on when they return to the setting.

Literacy: Roll up with Coralie

Develop children's literacy skills by engaging them with the book Cannonball Coralie and the Lion. Its story and literary devices explore ideas to do with friendship and having the courage to be yourself.

Glorious mud!

Winter is nearly over and if you’ve recently done an audit of your outdoor space, you might now be thinking about giving your mud kitchen a revamp, and introducing some new resources. If you haven’t yet set up a mud kitchen, now is definitely the time to start planning one.

Literacy: Trains of thought

John Burningham’s books are immediately captivating, taking children on magical journeys which carry powerful messages. Support them to use their phonic knowledge to decode words.

Literacy: Mum's special day

Celebrating Mother’s Day is a great way to encourage children to talk about their mums and exercise their literacy skills as they make cards and learn to write simple, loving messsages.

Literacy: Letters home

Have fun reading all the letters in The Jolly Postman and encourage children to compose their own letters, supporting them to create simple sentences and even a Valentine’s Day message.

Parent: Be my Valentine

Many settings love to celebrate Valentine’s Day – not only does it brighten up what can be a bleak month but it’s an opportunity to talk about love and kindness with children, says Annette Rawstrone.

Literacy: Sharing and caring

Chances are your book corner already has at least one title by author and illustrator Anthony Browne. Try these activities to engage children with his themes of family and friendship, and have fun exploring their surreal sense of humour!

Literacy: The power to dream

How to use simple resources such as fabrics, hats and a basket of natural objects to encourage children to experiment and use their imaginations to create characters and dialogue.

Wrap up!

'There's no such thing as bad weather – just inappropriate clothing,' as the saying goes. Use children’s colourful winter clothing as a link to many areas of learning.

Literacy: What to wish for

Claire Hewson focuses on wish fulfilment stories which can help children to learn valuable life lessons, since they always carry a cautionary message. By discussing the stories with children we can help them to explore these ideas in relation to their own lives.

A book about me

Claire Hewson provides a guide to using Apple’s My story app to enable children to create a book all about themselves. Help them to gain the skills to insert their own drawings, photos and text.

Virtually real

Claire Hewson suggests ways in which her chosen apps can deliver literacy learning when used alongside real learning experiences. It’s all about careful planning to ensure each child benefits.

Specific area of literacy

Continuing our exploration of the prime and specific areas of learning, this month we focus on the specific area of literacy and discuss how we can support the children in our settings.

Whatever the weather we play

There is one thing you can predict about a British summer, it is completely unpredictable! But as we know, with the right assortment of clothes, we go outside come rain or shine.

Pebble dash

All you need is a selection of smooth pebbles to make excellent props for storytelling. Link them to themes by making simple drawings and marks, and discover how children use them as reference points.

Learning to be a writer: why play really matters

To be a writer, children need experiences similar to those associated with play – testing skills through trial and error, exploring ideas imaginatively and creating something providing a sense of accomplishment.

It’s a reading good feeling

This article shares a number of ideas on how to provide opportunities for young children to read for pleasure, so when they are ready, they will have the motivation and foundations in story to perservere.

Adding extra ‘setting’ to your wonderful tales

Here we look at how resources can help to enhance a story, bringing it to life in exciting ways that are only limited by the imagination. It is surprising how easy it is to do, and how readily available these items are.

Storytelling foundations

This series shares a variety of ideas on how to provide opportunities for young children to read for pleasure, so when they are ready, they will have the motivation and foundations in story to persevere.

Play, come rain or shine

We resume our series of articles that look at the possibilities for play and learning inherent in certain popular and common early years resources and materials – this month, the weather.

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