Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Winter Early Literacy Newsletter

      Hello Readers, Hope you have a Happy Holiday!

Early Learning-Literacy Newsletter

 December 2014

Our Early Learning and Literacy Programs recognize the importance of play for children’s development. We support and enhance play to teach literacy skills.  For example, after the children have heard a story, we love to weave in activities that promote dramatic play and opportunities to re-tell the story

The “three stories a day“  that we choose as read-aloud act as a spring-board for ideas that encourage all ages  to explore the concepts  found in the story and act out a new  story in their own creative way.   We provide simple props that the kids turn into all sorts of things.  For example: when we read the Journey of the Dog Salmon by Nuchaanulth  Elder, Bruce Martin, all that was needed was a collection of old scarves.  The children  used the pink and red scarves to signal that they were now salmon “running up the river”.  All the adults joined in the Sockeye Salmon run and acted very tired by the time they arrived at their destination.  Because we had lots of opportunities to bring in the new vocabulary words “journey”, and “life cycle”, the children mastered the concepts we wanted to teach in a playful and joyful way.


Let’s Have Fun and “Look Out for Letters”       

We focused on recognizing the letter “s” and practiced making the “ss” sound  when the children covered Sammy Snake’s  letter with stones and made a hissing sound when they placed each rock on the letter template.
The Literacy Leaders, teachers and all the talented caregivers at NAC and Boy’s and Girl’s Club know that young children do not learn about the world by themselves.  All learning is social.  Stories help children think about and practice social skills such as problem solving and thinking about the needs and feelings of others.  Many of our stories involve solving problems.  Raven had to come up with plan to save the sun in Elder Ellen White’s story “Seagull Steals the Sun”.

Our Favourite Tips for Growing Up To Read

1.    Read to your child from the very start.  Even babies love books!
2.    Read every day.  Make a special time for books.
3.    Make a fun or cozy place to read or look at books.  Make a special place to display favourite books so they can be found easily.
4.    Bring some books with you when you go out. Book time can happen anywhere anytime! Books are great for the car.
5.    Be a family of readers.  Let your child see you reading books, magazines, recipes and more. Share culturally important stories.
6.    Read where you are. Look our for letters.  Point out signs, read street signs, cereal boxes, exit signs and other kinds of texts. Reading happens everywhere!
7.    Remind family and friends that books make wonderful presents.
8.    Make the reading time fun and special.  Take time to talk about the pictures and make connections between the book and recent events in your child’s life.
9.    Re-read favourite stories.  Let your child say the familiar lines...enjoy being dramatic! Make a big deal about the “Most Important Word”...your child’s name!


Every Child Needs a Literacy Blanket

Early literacy events should be joyful, cozy, and result in a child feeling special.  Literacy learning starts long before educators greet your child at the day care, pre-school or kindergarten door. It begins when your child is comfortably nestled in the in the crook of your arm, while sharing a book.  This is when literacy learning begins.  The experience feels cozy and comfortable, just like a favourite blanket.

Coach Auntie,  Coach Daddy,   Coach Grandma ,  Coach Teacher,   Coach Day Care Teachers,  Coach Community Reader Volunteers, Coach Mummy, Coach Uncle, Coach Grandpa, Coach Nanaimo Aboriginal Centre Administration Staff,   Coach Practicum Students
The Coast Salish  are famous for their weaving skills .  A Salish blanket is strong, unique and functional.  I would like to invite you to join us in creating  a “Literacy Blanket” for your child.  This Literacy Blanket will offer life-long use and function through all future learning paths. Special people in a child’s life: caring parents, grandparents, auntie, uncle, or loving friend of the family, can participate in  the process of weaving a precious “Literacy Blanket” for the special child in their lives.  Community members can also contribute to this project. 

Support our goal of creating a Literacy Blanket for every  child. Look for more details on how to get involved in January 2015.


We will be looking for Literacy Coaches to support and wrap every child in a warm cozy and fun "Literacy Blanket".


In friendship,

Donna Klockars

aka "The Literacy Lady"




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