Tuesday, November 1, 2016

ELLs and Environmental Print

Many preschool teachers use environmental print to help children learn letters and letter sounds. That big M for McDonald's or the letters in a favorite grocery store, pizza place, or even sports team can help children make gains with their alphabetic awareness. 

But, we often need to be aware that newcomers to the United States may not know the letters, signs, and meaning of this environmental print. It is up to us to be cognizant of this and find other ways to heighten awareness for finding letters in various places.

You can bring in newspapers in different languages. Often families receive these and will be happy to share. Find books in a child's home language and go on letter "hunts" using these. Look on the Internet for types of environmental print that speakers of other languages may be more accustomed to seeing and using. 

There are many ways you can find print that your newcomers are used to seeing. The first step is being aware that we need to do this.

Standards Alignment:
NAEYC - 2.D.01., 2.D.02., & 2.E.03.
Head Start - VII.D. & IX.A.

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