Posted in Be a PhD, ESL/ELL Instruction, Letter and Word Recognition, Literacy, Oral Language, Preschooler, Teaching Strategies

ESL/ELL Instruction – It’s easier than you think!

Whether you have ESL children or not in your classroom, having a variety of word games to be played by pairs of students or small groups is ideal. Pocket charts are great for these types of games. The key is to do activities where all students can interact and move around. Continue reading “ESL/ELL Instruction – It’s easier than you think!”

Posted in Letter and Word Recognition, Literacy, Oral Language, Quick Tips, Teaching Strategies

A fun twist on the alphabet song

Looking for a fun twist to the traditional alphabet song? Try the Hip Hop Alphabet. You can play the song in the background (the video isn’t needed) and either:

1. Display the alphabet on a large screen or easel and have one child use a pointer to point to each letter as the class sings the song OR

2. Give each child a letter of the alphabet and have them hold it up high and dance as it comes up in the song

Trust me, kids will love it. My undergraduate ECE preservice teachers do too!

Posted in Be a PhD, Headlines, Letter and Word Recognition, Literacy, Preschooler, Teaching Strategies

What’s your name?

So it’s time for your Kindergarteners to learn the letters of the alphabet. I mean really learn the letters. They all can sing the ABC song, but can they really point to each letter and identify it? Probably not. (And that’s fine by the way). I suggest using the children’s names to jumpstart your exploration into letters. Continue reading “What’s your name?”

Posted in Blog, Literacy, Oral Language, Teaching Strategies

Improv and Literacy Development

Aside from being a teacher, I have also been involved in the arts throughout my life. At one point in my 20’s I took an improv class at a the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater in New York City. I realized quickly that the work of an improv actor is very similar to the work of teacher. You have to think on your feet and respond to whatever is happening in front of you. And you never know what is coming next… Continue reading “Improv and Literacy Development”

Posted in Headlines, Literacy, Oral Language, Teaching Strategies

Using Photographs for Oral Language Development

Oral language development is the basis for all other literacy development. Children must first develop their oral language skills (listening and speaking), and then they will be able to participate in reading and writing. Here is one of the first activities I do with my early childhood students in our literacy class to emphasize oral language development. It’s easy to do and produces new words and sentences quickly and in a very interactive way.

This activity can be done with preschoolers and up. The older the children are, the more they can do in the activity. Read on and see what I mean…

Continue reading “Using Photographs for Oral Language Development”