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Early Literacy Development (preschool)

The following libguide is a selective inter-disciplinary bibliography to guide you in finding information in Bluford Library on early literacy development in children (birth-preschool).

What is Early Literacy

Early Literacy is what young children know about reading and writing before they can actually read and write.

Six Essential Early Literacy Skills

Print Motivation is the interest and motivation a child develops as they are exposed to positive experiences with various reading materials.

Print Awareness refers to a childs progressive understanding that letters and words are distinct elements of oral and written communication.

Letter Recognition refers to the ability to recognize, identify and verbally recite the names and sounds of the alphabet. 

Phonological Awareness is an individuals awareness of the phonological structure or sound structure of words. 

Narrative Skills refers to a childs ability to describe things or retelling a story or event in order.

Vocabulary is knowing and recognizing the names of things.

Milestones of Early Literacy Development

Document Source: Reach Out and Read Website, 2013

Benefits of Early Literacy

According to National Center for Education Statistics (NCES), children who were read to frequently are more likely to:

  • count to 20, or higher than those who were not (60% vs. 44%)
  • write their own names (54% vs. 40%)
  • read or pretend to read (77% vs. 57%)

Early Literacy Disparities

  • By 3 years of age, there is a significant word gap between children from the wealthiest and poorest families (RIF 2003).
  • Nationally, 34 percent of children entering kindergarten lack the basic language skills needed to learn how to read (RIF 2003).
  • Hispanic children are less likely than their White or Black counterparts to recognize the letters of the alphabet (Child Trends 2015).