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Reading and spelling in Preschool?

Discussion in 'Early Years' started by ccarrieannee, Sep 28, 2015.

  1. ccarrieannee

    ccarrieannee New commenter

    I work in a Preschool with children who are (mostly) 3 years old at the moment. We have just had a child make the transition from our Toddler room to our Preschool room. Unfortunately the child's father is very... pushy. He seems to think his child is leaps and bounds ahead of the other children, when in reality, they aren't.
    Today the father came to pick up his child and questioned whether we are doing anything in the way of spelling and reading. Unfortunately we have to tread very carefully when speaking with him as he can be very manipulative and rude so his question did take me by surprise a little. I told him that today we have had some new books delivered that are specifically designed to aid speech and language (which is true and we are currently looking into buying some more) but then the child's father continued to ask about spelling. May I add that the child cannot even write their own name yet, let alone read and spell!

    What I'd like to know is - should I be planning activities based around spelling and reading for 3 year olds? Especially in the first term of the academic year?!

    KELLYELIZABETH New commenter

    I also work in a preschool room. I have two key children who I have had for a year now and they have stayed on with us. These two children are now four years old and in the middle of last year I had them looking at rhyming words such as cat, hat, mat, sand, hand, dog, log etc. These two children can now read these words without blending the sounds together first. However, the children who have just moved up I am concentrating on their names first. One of mine can spell her name out and is copying the letters well. My other children do not know how to spell their name as yet. So I am focusing on their first letter of their name. I think at this age you can be too pushy and this can damage their young minds. I would tell dad that you are concentrating on their name first before looking at other letters and words.

    HTH x
    ccarrieannee likes this.
  3. Kartoshka

    Kartoshka Established commenter

    I was going to suggest the same thing! Can the child recognise his (or her) name? Can he recognise classmates' names? Can he pick out a classmate's name that begins with the same letter as his? These are all things that would be useful to do at some point during the year, when the children are ready.

    You should also be doing lots of phase 1 type phonics stuff: listening to different sounds (environmental, instruments, boy percussion), singing nursery rhymes, reading books that rhyme (eg. Julia Donaldson), playing games with alliteration and rhyme, practising oral blending and segmenting (eg. ask the children to put their hands on their h-e-d).These type of activities are essential for giving children a strong foundation upon which they can learn to read and spell.

    Beyond that... you need to see if the children are ready. But in the first term the vast majority will not be ready. Don't let this pushy parent make you doubt yourself! At the moment you need to plan activities to support children's personal, social, emotional and physical development, and develop their speaking and listening skills.
    ccarrieannee likes this.

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