parenting

Early Learning - TALK

All children, no matter how young, listen to people talk. It is how they learn new words and begin to understand the world around them.

EARLY LEARNING TIPS 

  • Talk with your child as you go about your day: making food, walking around the neighborhood, getting ready for bed, any time. 
  • You can add to their vocabulary when you respond to what your child says. If your toddler says “truck,” you can say, “We saw a big green truck today.” 

  • You can respond to babbling or even silence.

  • Use new words. If your child says “banana,” you can say, “Do you want a banana? That’s very healthy food.” 

  • Talk in the language most comfortable for you. Babies’ growing brains can easily learn more than one language.  

 

EARLY LITERACY ACTIVITIES  

from DEMCO

  • Ask “what if” questions as you walk outside. What if it never got dark? What if there were no birds? 
  • Go for a walk with your child and point to all of the circles that you see.
  • Point to an object and ask your child to say the name for it and a word that rhymes with it.
  • Cut out pictures from magazines and have your child practice matching the pictures to the letter sound you say. “B, b-b-b-b-b.”
  • Ask your child to compare objects around the house. Which is smaller? Which is longer?
  • Tell your child a story about something funny that happened to you when you were young.
  • Emphasize the beginning sounds in words. “Let’s eat a p-pp-peach!”
  • After your child tells a story, ask questions to get more details.

 

 

DEVELOPMENTAL MILESTONES

The National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has prepared resources to track developmental milestones.

The most important time for a child’s development is the first 5 years of life. If you have questions or concerns about your child’s development, learning, or behavior, reach out to Help Me Grow. Getting support is crucial to ensure your child reaches their optimal development.

Focus on Early Learning

When I went to library school in 2008, I knew I wanted to be a Children’s Librarian because I wanted to share the joy of reading. As my career develops my focus on early learning and parent engagement is clear, thus I was super excited to hear Pamela Paul’s recent interview on KQED Forum discussing her new book, co-written with her colleague Maria Russo, "How to Raise a Reader." Pamela shares family literacy tips on creating read-aloud routines, "championing genre fiction" and nurturing a love of books in kids of all age.

My favorite five family literacy tips for raising a reader:

  • You are your child's first teacher- model behavior you want them to develop (as indicated in the image above)
  • Never treat reading like a chore
  • Read to your baby, your toddler, your tween, your teen
  • All reading matters...including comic books
  • Always carry a book when you know you'll be waiting e.g. supermarket, doctor's appointment, restaurants

 FREE community resources you can access that promote early learning include:

In my role as an outreach librarian, I present storytime once a month at the rec centers noted above.

  • The OUSD Play Group near Grand Lake Theater is a great option Friday mornings (before Oakland libraries open).
    Fridays, 9:00 am - 12:00 pm -  September 27 - December 13, 2019
    Lakeview Campus Portable A, 746 Grand Avenue Oakland, CA 94610
  • VROOM provides learning tips via text you can share with your young child (ren). Available in English or Español
  • Kidappolis by LitLab is a mobile app that encourages parents to use screen time as an interactive early learning opportunity. Try “Kidappolis: School Edition for FREE using the code “demo
  • Help Me Grow is a resource network which collaborates with agencies, families, and providers across Alameda County to help ensure children ages birth – 5 years reach their optimal development. If you have concerns about your child’s developmental milestones, give them a call 888 - 510 - 1211. Their staff is multilingual. 

What are your favorite family literacy activities? Please share your positive experiences in the comments section.