Monday, March 17, 2014

Noisy or Quiet?/ Loud or Soft?

As spring approaches in many areas, it is the perfect time to get children outside - and why not do it with a purpose? Help children increase verbal skills and develop vocabulary along with observing the natural world. First walk outside. Invite children to listen for loud sounds. What does a child classify as loud? Perhaps it is the sound of a crow calling, "Caw, caw, caw!" It may be a sound such as a fire engine blaring through town on the way to an emergency. These are all opportunities to increase expressive language.
What does your child do when a loud sound is heard? Talk about how some things are noisy while other sounds are quiet.
Share the joy of natural sounds with children. This child is listening for the quiet rustle of the wind in a bush.
Add favorite books to the experience by asking children to find pages that illustrate the vocabulary: loud/soft (or noisy/quiet). This child found a much loved page in the classic children's book, Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown, that reminds him of the quiet sounds of nature. The little old lady is whispering, "Hush." Ask children to point out words such as whispering and hush that describe the experience. This increases vocabulary.

Finding matching experiences in books helps children connect with literature, an important literacy skill.
Here, the child finds a page in a Llama, Llama book by Anna Dewdney that reminds him of loud or noisy sounds.

Talking about sounds and then finding similar experiences in books is a rich family activity for all to enjoy. The added benefit? Children learn more about the world around them, increase vocabulary, and connect with books!

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