Environmental print is everywhere and can help children develop a sense of both Alphabetic Principle (identification of letters) and understand that those “mysterious marks” on a page, sign, or on a box have meaning.
For more on environmental print and alphabetic principle activities watch the video below.
You likely have objects labeled in your classroom to help children develop this understanding. But are these signs at child eye level? Crouch down to the height of the children in your class. Make sure your labels are at the eye-level of the children.
|This label is too high for a child. Sometimes we tend to automatically put objects at our eye-level.|
|This label is "just right." Children should not be looking up to read.|
Suggesting to families that they label items in their homes is a good way to make the home-school connection. Use your newsletter to ask families to label three items in whatever language is spoken in the home. Children can draw a picture or take a photo of a labeled object and explain it in the classroom.
This also makes a wonderful and meaningful car game. As children are riding to school, to the store, or going along on errands, families can encourage them to look at businesses or signs along the roadways and streets. See if they can spot letters from their names.
Please feel free to copy our family suggestions in your newsletters or suggest our website.
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Knowing about and understanding diverse family and community characteristics
Supporting and engaging families and communities through respectful, reciprocal relationships
Involving families and communities in young children’s development and learning
Head Start Alignment:
Identifies at least 10 letters of the alphabet, especially those in their own name
Develops growing understanding of the different functions of forms of print such as signs, letters, newspapers, lists, messages, and menus