When I was little, I loved getting our picture dictionary off of the shelf so I could read, draw and write about all of the things I found within the pages. I made my own journals for this work. I would gather a bunch of white drawing paper together and have my mom staple the pages. And I would make a beautiful cover proclaiming By. Shannon Marie McClintock with my age underneath.
The homemade journals would fill up with all types of words and pictures. Stories eventually ran through the pages too. My literacy skills were developing in such a meaningful and special way.
As our preschool aged children develop literacy skills, we as parents and teachers look for language and reading experiences that expose them to meaningful oral and written materials and activities. We build on their prior knowledge and the things they love in the world around them. And we look for ways to combine reading and language with engaging activities such as printing and manipulating words, expressive storytelling, play and having a voice in the connections they are making.
How has this changed for children now with access to technology and digital storytelling tools, images and books?
Today, my friend Marie told me a story that made me think of these journals I would create.
However, in this story the journal changed a little with the access to technology and digital storytelling tools, images and books our children now have within their lives.
Marie was with her grandson who is 5 years old and in prekindergarten. They were together at a family event and she opened up the Buncee app on her phone.
They started talking about all types of things like animals and colors. Marie opened up the Stickers, find an image and add it to the page. She would type the word and he would spell it out with her.
Marie shared, Theo was so, so cute and eager to keep going. I just loved watching him picture the words in his mind and then he'd get it right and I'd add the word to the Buncee. Sometimes I'd add the sticker and he'd spell the word. He kept saying...give me more!
And I just LOVE how they also attached Audio to the stickers too. If you click on the dog in Theo's at the top of this post or here, you will hear him spelling it out too. What a wonderful activity for him and something very special to share with his parents and keep as a beginning reading memory too.
These early literacy experiences are so important to children....just as they were to me in my paper journals and Theo in the Buncee he created with his grandma.
How do you foster the development of these skills too?