Why is it important to think about my child’s literacy learning before  he or she begins formal schooling?

We know that much learning occurs in your child’s preschool years. For example, your child will have approximately 50 words at 12-18 months of age. But by the time children enter kindergarten, this vocabulary will grow to 3,000-5,000 words!  It is important to capture this learning opportunity to prepare them as well as possible for school success. And, w know that early experiences using oral language, reading books, and “writing” in the preschool years positively affect children’s successes when learning to read and write.

We also know that literacy skills in the early primary grades can predict overall school achievement. In other words, children who are good readers and writers in first grade tend to be high achievers in high school. Your child’s first school experiences can set the tone, so to speak, for the remainder of his or her school experience. A positive first experience will result in your child enjoying school and we know that enjoyment pays off in how much effort students put into their learning. In addition, a positive experience will allow your child to develop a positive self-concept as a learner, another important factor in ensuring school success. The more exposure your child has to activities that involve oral communication, interactions with books and opportunities to engage in writing-like activities the better prepared he or she will be to begin school.