Thursday, February 18, 2010

Focus on Early Childhood (Do You Have A Infant, Toddler or Preschooler)?


Tomorrow I'm attending a wonderful north AL institution:  the NW Alabama Childcare Conference.  I always get excited because I get to see all my friends in the early childhood world (teachers and directors) from across the northern part of our state.  And this year, we have a keynote speaker I know will be incredible:  Steven Layne.  I wish those of you who are parents could be here to hear him.

I met Steven at a conference several years ago and so applauded his message:  we need to spread a PASSION for reading!  Check out his books, Love the Baby and My Brother Dan's Delicious, now available on audio too!.  What I like most about Steven is that he isn't your typical stuffy researcher from the university environment.  He indeed has a passion that is contagious and we need that kind of epidemic.  Don't be afraid to catch this bug!

(and teachers)

I also want to share with you parents of 3-6 year olds a new video from TLA, Inc. that teaches you how to play a game, Rhymin' Simon, with your young children.  It's drawn from my new book, Anytime Reading Readiness, and its partner for educators, Before They Read, and is a quick easy way to build early skills while having a great deal of fun. 

Rhyming is the doorway into the world of thinking about words for the sounds within them (apart from their meaning).  The ability to recognize and even generate (eventually) rhymes comes as early as age 2.5 or 3 but it starts with simply playing with the language.  As you talk daily with your child, you have given him many great tools in the language he uses; this activity and others like it are the way to effectively build on those experiences as he/she moves on the road toward getting ready to read. 

My last gifts to you: 

1) a list of books to support rhyming and other early childhood literacy skills.  Enjoy!

2) a chance to win a copy of Anytime Reading Readiness!  Just cut and paste this email address with the words ANYTIME CONTEST in the subject line and you'll automatically be entered.  Contest runs through the end of February.

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