Skip to main content

Babies, Toddlers and Preschoolers

Early Literacy for Preschoolers

Preschoolers are learning many essential life skills to prepare them for the school years while quickly gaining independence. There is no need for flash cards or drills at this age, but providing your child with rich and enjoyable reading experiences will go a long way in preparing them for Kindergarten.

Literacy can be a part of every day! Below are some ideas to help make talking, singing, reading, writing, and playing with your preschooler a part of your family's routine.

Talk, Sing, Read, Write, Play Everyday!

TALKING with Preschoolers

Take time to talk with your preschooler throughout the day! Ask questions that require more than one word responses and expand on what your child says by adding descriptive words and modeling proper grammar.

  • Talk about the pictures in a book or the things you see while out for a walk
  • Family of three looking at treeInvolve your child in tasks such as baking, doing repairs and gardening. Talking about the process and then asking your child what they think will happen next
  • Ask your child to tell you about their day and actively listen to their responses
  • Do your best to answer the never ending stream of "Why?" questions fully. The more things and words your child knows the easier it will be for them when they start to learn to read

SINGING with Preschoolers

Preschoolers will begin to produce words that rhyme or start with the same sound. Encourage play with language, making up silly words and sounds.

  • Clap, tap spoons or shake shakers while singing and rhyming to keep a beat and emphasize syllables, or the parts of words
  • Expose your child to a variety of songs and rhymes. Library storytime is a great place to learn new and old songs to add to your repertoire!
  • Match songs and rhymes with daily activities, like brushing teeth, cleaning up, and going to bed

READING with Preschoolers

  • Draw them in! Allow reading to be an interactive experience, where your child has an active role in storytelling.
  • Expose your child to a variety of books; introduce non-fiction, wordless and poetry books.
  • Encourage your child to retell their favorite stories, or parts of their day while on the go.
  • Make time for reading! Set aside time each day to curl up and grab a book.
  • Ask questions about the book you are reading and encourage your child to predict what will happen next.

For more information on sharing books with your preschooler and suggested titles click here

WRITING with Preschoolers

The first letter children will begin to identify and write is the first letter of their name.

  • Allow children to practice making lines and shapes, eventually producing the letters in their name
  • Ask your child to tell you about what they have drawn by asking "What is happening in this picture?" Write captions based on their responses
  • Identify letters in the environment: traffic signs, store advertisements and information boards.

PLAYING with Preschoolers

Make time to play with your child. While independent and peer play are important, research has shown that play is richer when an adult participates.

  • Encourage imaginative and dramatic play! Children can make up stories using play clothes, puppets, or other props
  • Play games with simple rules and familiar concepts
  • Allow your child to be the leader while playing. Play a supportive role, building on their ideas and following their direction
Loading ...

Books to Support Early Literacy

Book Cover: Pete the Cat - I Love my White Shoes

Click the title above to find it in the catalogue

Singing to Get Every Child Ready to Read

Click here for a list of books that you can sing!

Book Cover: The Magic Hat

Click the title above to find it in the catalogue

Rhyming to Get Every Child Ready to Read

Click here for a list of books with rhyme and poetry!

Book Cover: Something from Nothing

Click on the title above to find it in the catalogue

Reading to Get Every Child Ready to Read

Click here for a list of books with rare language!

Book Cover: Get Out of My Bath!

Click the title above to find it in the catalogue

Talking to Get Every Child Ready to Read

Click here for a list of books that invite participation!

Book Cover: Tuesday

Click the title above to find it in the catalogue

Talking to Get Every Child Ready to Read

Click here for a list of wordless books that make you the storyteller!

Book Cover: Animalia

Click the title above to find it in the catalogue

Writing to Get Every Child Ready to Read

Click here for a list of books for fun with letters!

Book Cover: Can you make a scary face?

Click the title above to find it in the catalogue

Playing to Help Every Child Get Ready to Read

Click here for a list of books with movement, props, or puppets!