Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Every Child Ready to Read ~ Play!

Every Child Ready to Read (ECRR) is a national initiative from the American Library Association.  ECRR is a learning model to showcase skills and activities to help build literacy skills for young children.  We follow this model at the Grafton-Midview Public Library and would like to share some  activities and resources with you!  For more information on Every Child Ready to Read, here are some sites for you to peruse:
Ohio Every Child Ready to Read, Early Literacy Crosswalk offers a basic overview of what Every Child Ready to Read is all about.  They also have another site to discover the second edition of ECRR and sample activities for each skill and activity.

We don't want to overload you with information all at once, so each week we will focus on a new  activity outlined in ECRR.  Because we recently purchased literacy kits and assorted toys from Lakeshore Learning, we thought it would be a perfect time to showcase the importance of playing to learn.

Books with interactive elements get children involved in reading and make it more like a game.
 When children play they are using many skills that they need to develop literacy skills.  When children play with others they are learning new vocabulary.  Kids are using their imaginations to problem solve and use symbolism, such as when a stick becomes a magic wand.  Symbolism is an important skill because it helps them eventually learn that letters and words can stand for stories and feelings. We currently have 15 literacy kits available for check-out that come with many hands-on manipulatives and activities.  Each kit comes with 5 books on the theme of the box and an activity guide so you can play together with ease.  

photo from www.lakeshorelearning.com
 When children are building with blocks they are learning and practicing spatial skills, balance,  problem solving, and creativity.  

photo from www.lakeshorelearning.com
 When using imaginary and dramatic play, such as with a doll house, children are learning to express themselves.  Dramatic play can help children work out tricky situations or emotions they are dealing with. 
photo from www.lakeshorelearning.com


We have several sites we visit for inspiration for playing with our young friends.  Growing a Jeweled Rose shares a ton of ideas for sensory play, or playing that appeals to your senses.  She showcases scented play-doh, different themed baths, or just bins of goop for kids to touch and feel.  So many of her creations are brightly colored or scented, appealing to many of the senses beyond just sight.  Modern Parents, Messy Kids has an entire make and play vault of ideas!  This site really appeals to us because the ideas get kids outside and involved with nature.  The ideas for play shared on this site are broken down into types of play including, but not limited to, dramatic play, sensory play, and even arts and crafts.  No Time For Flash Cards is another site with tons of ideas for dramatic play, cooking activities, and fine and gross motor play.  If you're unsure of how to play with your baby, check out Today's Parent for ideas on baby games.
Stop by GMPL for the next four Wednesday evenings for our Explore the Floor program.  You'll get a chance to play with our awesome toys and practice these skills together with Miss Kristen!  Email gmplkids@gmail.com to register.