Links to Literacy Instructional Best Practices

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Here is the checklist for best literacy teaching practices.
Book Knowledge and Appreciation
The Teacher...
  • pre-reads the books
Introduces the book to the children:
  • title
  • name of author
  • name of illustrator
  • shows cover
  • lets children make predictions
  • does a picture walk
  • reads with expression
  • asks questions
  • encourages children's interaction with story
  • uses props to engage children
  • adds new words from story to Picture Word Wall
Reads to:
  • small group
  • large group
Provides an environment for reading:
  • cozy inviting reading center
  • comfortable large read aloud area
  • variety of books are available at numerous centers


Phonological Awareness

The Teacher...
Provides listening opportunities in which children:
  • follow verbal directions
  • participate in rhythmic activities
  • identify sequences of sound
  • identify environmental sounds
  • identify word substitutions in familiar phrases or nursery rhymes
  • listen for patterns in words
  • listen for beginning sounds in single syllable words, ex: c-at
  • listen for ending sounds in single syllable words, ex: ca-t
Provides activities using rhyming words in:
  • nursery rhymes
  •  poems
  • songs
  • read-alouds
  • word play
  • fingerplays
  • models speaking in complete sentences
  • encourages speaking in complete sentences
  • provides opportunities for children to listen to, recite, or sing rhymes, poems, songs, and fingerplays
Oral Language Development
The Teacher...
provides opportunities for children to engage in meaningful conversations through formal and informal interactions:
  • naming objects
  • describing objects
  • learning new vocabulary
Asks questions:
  • who?
  • what?
  • when?
  • why?
  • how?
  • open-ended questions
Encourages children to:
  • describe events
  • describe feelings
  • re-tell stories
  • re-enact stories or situations
  • use positional words
  • give directions
  • speak in complete sentences
  • models speaking in complete sentences
Provides opportunities for language activities to take place in:
  • small groups
  • large groups
  • individually

Print Awareness/Early Writing

The Teacher...
  • models directionally and one to one matching by pointing to words in text, charts, poems, songs
  • models left to right directionality when writing
  • displays pieces of familiar text (songs, poems, finger plays) around the room at a child's eye level to "read" independently 
  • calls attention to print displayed around the room
  • uses interactive writing to provide opportunities for the children to construct print
  • engages children in shared and interactive writing activities
  • maintains a writing center in a prominent area of the room
  • provides a variety of writing materials in all learning centers include things to write on, things to write with, and accessories (envelopes, tape, stamp-pad, magazines, junk mail, magnetic letters, catalogs, etc.)
  • gives praise and encouragement for early writing attempts
  • records the child's dictation
  • displays children's work at the child's eye level
  • provides examples of environmental print for the children to identify
  • uses the Picture Word Wall to call attention to words as unites of print
  • provides opportunities for children to respond to literature