Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Beginning Language Arts in Preschool

Preschoolers have a wide range of writing that is appropriate for the age. Some children are at the stage of representing their thoughts with squiggles, while others represent words by their initial sounds.  We try to reach children at all stages in many ways throughout the day. 

Our morning announcement board has predictable sentences that the children read every day.  There is very little variation in what is written.  This allows for us to focus on spaces between words,  build sight words, and some simple sentence structure. Each day there is one sentence that is totally different. There is a question that the children answer by putting their names under a category. For example, today the question was: Do you have a Tt in your name? 

Our journals is another place that we focus on developing our writing skills. Students write their picture story. Some continue to use squiggly lines, others use a few random letters to represent their thoughts, some are writing the sounds they hear in a word, and a few are beginning to write sight words.  Journals are one of the many activities in which each child is taken purely at the stage that she/he is at, and moved from that point.

Much of our focus on building young writers is focused on sound to letter correspondence. This allows children to write their complete thoughts and not get caught up in if it is "spelled correctly."  There is a place for formalized spelling, but that comes later in their academic careers.  

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