Webinar: Oral Language and Literacy Instruction for Preschoolers

good afternoon everyone art senior editor of books and related resources at na ey C I'd like to welcome you to this webinar on through C and language related skills with the authors of the na ey C book so much more than the ABCs the early phases of reading and writing we're excited that Judith chica dance and Molly Collins are with us today to explore the importance of both both oral language and literacy skills to the digital development of literacy and how preschool teachers can integrate both into their classroom experiences Judis chicka Dan's is professor emeritus at Boston University she's authored numerous articles and books including increasing the power of instruction writing in preschool and understanding children and adolescents Molly Collins is a lecturer in the Department of teaching and learning at Peabody College Vanderbilt University her articles include the young children article sagacious sophisticated and sedulous the importance of discussing 50 cent words with young children before we get started I'd like to give up just a few housekeeping details during the presentation Judy and Molly will refer to handout you can find these handouts under event resources which is on the left side of your screen after the presentation we'll have time for questions if you have questions you want to ask the presenters please write them in the question box on the lower left side of your screen the author's will answer as many as they have time for at the end of the presentation we also want to remind you that we do not offer continuing education credits or certificates of completion for our webinars and the webinar will be recorded and you will be notified by email when it's available to view so thanks again for joining us afternoon and let's get started Judy and Molly over to you hello this is Molly Judy Ann I thank you for joining us today for this early literacy webinar about the relative importance of language skills and literacy skills many freescale preschool teachers feel they should focus mostly on literacy skills although they know language skills are important too then they under whether they've made the right decision research can help us here because researchers have examined the impact of specific sets of skills on the reading process at different points in its development first both oral language and literacy skills must be developed in preschool and kindergarten because they affect the children's reading success in the later grades but different sets of skills are especially important at different times literacy skills developed in preschool and kindergarten have their greatest impact on the reading process in first and second grades if we think about why it makes sense because in first and second grades children are learning to read which means they're learning how to sound out words and beginning readers the children's beginning readers are not rich in plot lines nor are they full of diverse vocabulary sentences and their books are also simple and repetitive you can hear this organization a little bit as I read from a beginning reader grandma looked under the sofa the kitten was not there mr. Cate looked under the bed the kitten was not there contrast or language skills developed in preschool and kindergarten have their greatest impact on the reading process in later grades third and fourth and Beyond when the major task of reading is comprehension this makes sense as children are beginning now to rearm so it's critical for teachers to know that both sets of skills must be developed in the early years even though the oral language sets does not have its most important impact on a child's reading for several years so here's the preschool teachers dilemma and the consequences in a nutshell on the one hand preschool teachers today know the importance of developing preschoolers oral language because it is essential later for reading comprehension but they also know that literacy skills are critical for learning to read and therefore feel they should come first many preschool teachers focus primarily on literacy skills rather than give equal emphasis to language related skills and literacy skills yet they worry that this decision will hurt children in the long run will it well now you know that the research says yes it will in the long run and that is the important part here how long it takes for the importance of language they use skills and preschool to show up as Molly illustrated with a few lines from the book was designed for learning to read simplify book step familiar vocabulary simple sentences and very familiar content that children can comprehend easily after the swords are decoded but thanks begin to change by third grade when books become more challenging then and the increase in challenge with each successive school year books are now resources major resources for children's new learning and this is when support for oral language and content and halogen preschool starts to pay off so preschool teachers should talk to 4th grade teachers not just the 1st grade teacher and they would hear a little more about this now one interesting thing is children can do very well in decoding and actually have fairly high reading achievement during the early learning to read things but then in the fourth grade especially we often see what's called the fourth grade slump achievement drops and in other words decoding alone is not enough of support comprehension so children with liquor language and content skills they're reaching that goes down and because assessment reading at this point and on forward is on the content that you learn from what you read the assessment is not decoding skills unless you have a reading problem and then you'll be working on decoding skills as a child still but the major assessments and theories both great and beyond is on the content you learn so the bottom line is long-term success in school requires pre-k support for both language related skills and knowledge and literacy skills we have to do it all okay we use the term decoding and the term language skill let's take a look at the items inside each one and see what's there the first summer is code related skills other people might have more but for Judy and me these are the big three alphabet letter name knowledge phonological awareness as we see in rhyming games with children or beginning sound games words the begin with the same sound you know some of those and concepts of print a good example of one is that print is read from left to right and top to bottom in English and other languages too for the second domain oral language skills there are three specific items vocabulary and conceptual knowledge for example nocturnal animals such as owl stay awake at night facility with syntax and you might hear children's errors daddy not going to the store and morphological errors I saw two horses so children need facility and syntax with syntax and morphology which is how sentences and how words go together third component is understanding how language is used for different purposes such as to tell to request to explain or to clarify and skills from both of these domains are explained further and handout one so if you want to refer to that you may headings on the handout match items listed on the slide well what led to the current dilemma now put that in other words what gave preschool educators some wiggle room to focus primarily on literacy skills and slide lines related knowledge and skills and then who push back so the answer to the first question that wiggle room is that the report from the National Literacy panel provided some and then some language literacy experts push back with critiques of an elf report published in a special issue of educational researcher and I will have some details about the wiggle room and the pushback so what does the national early literacy panel do and what is contained in their report well first they examine results from meta analyses about the foundational knowledge that predicts later reading and spelling and this was very helpful for us to know they also or the report also emphasized code related abilities minimized language because the direct relationship of language to learning to read was weaker so let me make that clear or say it as a slightly different way the direct relationship of language to learning to read was weaker than the direct relationship of literacy skills to learning to read and this makes some sense and few of information a few slides ago regarding when skills have their greatest impact on the reading process also the panel found more effects of early interventions on code related skills and on language and there were many more interventions that dealt with code related skills than with language skills for the panel to include so it might be easier to teach code related skills and language skills and it takes longer to conduct a study that measures the full impact of language skills because preschoolers must be followed through the third and fourth grade or beyond longitudinal studies require more funding as well as more researcher time and the research that gets done may be the research that doesn't take so long so that's what the panel said now to the critiques of the report published in educational researcher so I'm talking about bullets one and two here language ability strongly supports reading comprehension and early language growth predicts later language growth we know these things from research even though the panel found far more studies that examined literacy skills and kind of went with that and bullet one informs bullet two and some from the language research we do have we know that language is critical to comprehension and builds over time and an early start helps ensure later growth literacy skills strongly predict success in learning to read that is decoding words critics agree that literacy skills strongly predict lining to read but stress that decoding skills Oh necessary and sufficient for supporting reading comprehension they thought that the nails report did not make this point strongly enough because it's easier to teach and measure literacy skills and language skills and literacy skills are critical for learning to decode words they are often over emphasized at the preschool level and finally as you might imagine later reading comprehension is compromised if the priority in preschool is on literacy skills not on both language and literacy skills okay so the teacher often ask well how can I do it all that's a lot to do I think that's a fair question it is difficult to do it all and it's especially difficult when preschool teachers believe or have been told that literacy skills number one must be taught in isolation of each other and number two must be taught outside of actual context of their youth in other words a lot of people who focus on or give a great importance of literature skills and actually we think they're very important also have some stronger beliefs beliefs about how you approach the instruction and is very isolated what I would call skill in real fashion well Molly and I would agree that some instruction should focus on alphabet letters knowledge only and on phonological rings only so we also know that children can learn new skills within broader experiences that integrate instructions for both lucid skills and language related knowledge and skills so today we use examples to illustrate three kinds of experiences where the instruction can be integrated and the first one the first gold is recalling and recording past experience and the second is engaging in mealtime conversation and that there it is using alphabet instruction that also supports language and content development it really is possible to do that okay I'm going to start with recalling and recording experiences and an example of that call the spring loss after a quick overview here I'll provide some details about one teachers implementation and put some more details on this experience so overall children teachers walk near the preschool talking about what they see on us early spring day later that day and on several subsequent days the teacher and children gather as a group to talk about what they saw on their walk the teacher writes down children's recollections on a piece of prepared chart paper under the heading what we saw on a walk and then more children share recollections on a couple of subsequent days and on day one before the group is dismissed the teacher also makes some suggestions for related activities for choice time so let's take day one and the teacher had time to listen and respond to three children's recollections of the first job that I taught them yellow flower and the second child said I saw some big rocks and the third child said some bikes so lifts you I will use the first jobs response and the teachers recollection and the teachers response to that to illustrate how this works what the teachers actually doing the instructional details here I won't have time to do the other two children but some information about those interactions are on the handout so first of all we call with the child number one said I saw some yellow flowers the teacher then said yes we did see a lot of daffodils blooming in someone's yard daffodils are beautiful brought with the yellow flowers that bloom very early in the spring just about as soon as it begins to get warm okay so specifically those details relate to use precise language and verbal responses and edited information so the teach group named the flowers daffodils I'm sure that was down the walk also that often children don't pick up the precise terminology this child says I can't you know some some yellow flowers so the teacher uses the precise name of them flowers daffodils and also use the term ER the context where they Racine and then at in terms of adding information added the daffodils bloom fairly early in the spring and then after that tucked in sort of a definition of spring early in the spring without as soon as it begins to get warm okay and then bullets number one into the second and third goal its name letters use and writing or sound and least a few sounds and spoken words to leather shoes to write them so here's what the teacher did next after the verbal response said okay I'll write yellow daffodils down on our chart that I prepared here and she read the headings what we saw on our walk and then she said okay to write yellow we use letter y and she writes a lot and then she says use mes like the e and then we need to L and she likes those and then when we the letters O and W she wrote those two letters and then in cases she said now we need the second words possible and she says daffodils starts with the dust sounds and we use the letter D – right yeah so she wrote that down and then we need the letter A she likes that we need to act she was at Rhodes and oh and a D and an I am didn't L and then ask them so she writes she names and she writes all the letters now what's interesting then if she she read the entry and underlying the two words as she did and when she was reading the daffodil she landed with her finger just a bit under the birthday of daffodils as she said yeah Gathol and then build so she's also linking the letter that's written now to the family she seen in the word so we can see here how the teacher dealt political skills as well as the language and content knowledge now I'm expecting that some people out there are saying to themselves so there's not much conversation here the child's that shared a recollection and the teacher basically commented on it and I will agree that there really isn't a vacuum forth here in terms of conversation and not conversation that includes the other children about this one jobs recollection but keep in mind this was a group study and of about 20 children and and those of you who are teachers the preschoolers know that's rather difficult to hold everybody's attention and so sometimes teachers make the decision to respond this is good features good and then go on to the next recollection and then another one knowing that on the walk itself there was a lot of conversations and then you'll see in the follow-up opportunities there's opportunities for more and we always have to make very hard decisions which go with some preschoolers we are always outnumbered that's one of the problems okay so this goes on the next slide setting the stage for next day so before this day ended and keep in mind she has responded to more children and then she says we don't have enough time today to write down more children's recollections but there will be time tomorrow the next day and then she said to the children you can make drawing or painting and she said drives us were here to illustrate the list of recollections on our chart paper and you can see here flowers drawn with markers by one child and she said I'll glue them to our chart um and she did lose some and then she said or you can paint or draw pictures to take home or you can donate them to a class bulletin board display which she also has plans now this teacher knew that drawing and painting pictures during choice time with the children would be thinking about what they had seen there's probably some talk going on about it and this might help children the next day who want to share what they saw on the walk and then the bulletin board display you ought to move that's another opportunity to talk with children about what they want to donate to the bulletin board and as always um in this classroom especially labels with the child's pain and then the teachers writing down with what the child said you get literacy skills in the bulletin board actually as well so it's not a one-shot deal of just one day with a few children only about their recollection now take a look at the handout this is handout – now the first page for column and we don't have time to go over this and you'll be able to have it in regulators but I did want to point out that the last three bullets of the loser skills address numbers of six Scarlet Letter appears in many different words for example yellow deficit and then when writing a reading English print we move from left to right and talked about and space is used separate words now those particular limited skills the teacher did not mention specifically she only modeled and data are available for children to observe and I just want to make the point that one value of these contextualized experiences is there's really a lot more in the situation it's not taught directly that children do over time just soak up and that is really important learning now district lock your attention in terms of the language related knowledge and skills there are six bolts there and the last four give you details of how the teacher responded to the second and third child doesn't want to take a look at that okay a second opportunity lies in conversations at mealtimes likely underutilized context because we might not realize their potential or we're just busy doing other things at Meal Time children are sitting and we're tucking in other tasks the bullets on this slide orient us to the conversation about grits and so I'll go over a few of those points children and teachers eat meals family-style in the classroom and the food is prepared in the school cafeteria and then it's served in the classroom children are seated at three round tables one teacher sits and eats at one of the tables while an assisting teacher circulates serving food the children and teacher have extended conversations about activities and events at home and at school including the food served during the mealtime and conversations are usually specific to a table but children often participate across tables and the teacher encourages that because it focuses them and keeps them engaged and as you know the teacher can only be at one table at one time and really in this context the teacher can do quite a lot as we'll see so let's look at handout to page one column two under the heading a conversation about grits I'm going to read the conversation and I'd like for you to listen so the opportunities the teacher used for oral language skill development okay so a bit about the settings there were 20 children and they're seated around three large round tables having breakfast in a head-start classroom in a large Midwestern US city there's a large bowl of grits on the table and some other food items entrees and involved including scrambled eggs bacon toast and rolls and an assisting teacher in the room circulates and she's helping with managerial duties of breakfast okay here we go did you want any grits something inaudible give you energy yes they give you energy too but I don't like grips grips the grips are made out of does anyone know what grips are made out of no one answers it's made out of corn grits grits mm-hmm made out of corn you don't like corn don't you like corn grits make the something inaudible but the teacher heard it yes I like corn too at least that's your favorite color yellow it sure is the corn is yellow they just take out the inside of the corn grind it up and make grits and you eat it mm-hmm so you might have noticed a variety of opportunities for supporting oral language in mealtime conversations and so I want to examine these briefly here the teacher listened and she participated she was there in the extended conversation she generated an authentic topic which is very rich and meaningful and in doing that she created a welcoming environment she involved multiple children she expanded their comments she affirmed their correct offering she affirmed their participation one of the nice things she did is provide clear explanations and she used new vocabulary in the context of this talk a really rich feature of this conversation is that the teacher fostered content knowledge and reasoning as well as the integration of background information not the pretty hefty load to foster and finally she modeled discourse skills how to start a conversation responding contingently to what people say and deepening understanding through multiple exchanges and view of the teachers realization of these opportunities for building oral language skills children's stand to gain a lot really so what did they learn let's look at handout to right where we left off after the conversation on page 2 look in the first column language related knowledge and skills through the teachers modeling and language use the children learned how to start conversations and talk about topics in their immediate environment and we call that contextualized talk children heard word order for sentences and questions they heard new vocabulary a number of times and they heard expansions of utterances which fosters connections to content and what we're talking about children also learn to listen to other children and to the teacher and to respond with relevant comments they learn to think deeply about a topic by having multiple exchanges or expecting that multiple exchanges were or just fine they learn to consider and bring to the conversation their background knowledge and we know this children know some things sometimes they don't think they do but they do and they should use this children learn to make logical connections among uh pterence –is because the teacher modeled this and sometimes this is hard let's take a look for a month this teacher was able to take a child comment and make a logical connection for example when the child said at least that's your favorite color yellow the conversation might have beard-off two favorite colors or it might have just ended but the teacher didn't let it she affirmed the child statement and tied it right back to the topic by saying it sure is the corn is yellow they just take it and then she talked more about the process children learned conceptual and content knowledge about corn because the teacher provided it and she kept it as a salient piece of the conversation so in this sense the teacher had children acquire some knowledge about grits and corn during this conversation so if you have conversations such as these that is those that are rich in or language supports you position young children for learning for other learning opportunities throughout the day and let me let me talk about a few examples here look at photo one titled breakfast menu conversations at mealtime can offer opportunity to COSO their context and throughout the day for example the teacher could enlist the children's help in creating a breakfast menu like this one in a smaller large group activity children could help list items of the teacher rights Judy's example demonstrated how language and literacy skills can be supported and similar opportunities exist here in photograph two food boxes with prints can be placed in the dramatic play area for several days for example after the conversation about grits at breakfast teachers could include about the cornmeal or instant grits on a dramatic play area food shelf teachers can introduce new items in a larger small group setting and when a teacher plays with children which we advocate the teacher might use the new prop by reading what's inside or reading directions for preparing and and modeling how how we use print in photograph three you'll see a classroom graph conversations at mealtime can include those about everyone's favorite food graphing the results of a survey of these favorite foods can support math skills in a survey graphed here children's favorite foods were listed by the teacher voted on by children post-its and tallied spatially in the graph so the meal plan grits conversation example really didn't end at mealtime let's did it it became a springboard for supporting literacy and conceptual knowledge throughout the day okay I know smiley was talking about the Brits conversation and I noticed that you know the back and forth there I was thinking that that was a focus conversation on grits it's quite different from the spring-locks language experience about having children share their recollections and having a number of those it's not quite as focused of course it's all about the spring walk that there are different things that show dimensions so just again my point is that different contexts allow different things to happen and also put various restrictions or removes instructions on the kind of talking and conversation or and furcal interactions we can have with children okay but now we're going on to the letter clogging and with this what I would like for you on wherever you are to play along and in two ways first I would like for you to play along with me as I serve as the teacher as if I'm in front of a group of children now you will not see me draw the clues but I will give verbal descriptions and I think you will be able to know what you should draw on your paper so I would like you to play teacher as I said and then at the same time for you I would like for you to think about the children if you were a child or if children you know was sitting there watching naughty clothes dry what would they be thinking so to play this game we start first of all I need a chalk a large sharp piece of chart paper or a large white marker board either one will do and I use both I'm seeing both used it does need to be large in your food blind the minutes so I say the children I'm thinking of a letter and I can see it in my mind I'm going to give you one go to time and after each clue I will ask you if you have an idea of the letter to fit my line okay here's the first clue now the write this letter we start with a long vertical line go down and to make the long vertical line like this okay yeah does anybody have any ideas about what they might be in benign and let's say that there is a child named Danielle and she says I know I know and I asked what what are you saying cuz she says be it's very typical for children to use the first letters of their first name and I say oh I know what you're thinking I know exactly what you're thinking and you are right that when we draw when we make D we start with a long vertical line now at this point I've moved to the side of my chart paper or my white marker board because I'm going to make a D so I do the long bridge I draw the long vertical line and I say and then we go to the very top of that line and we go around to the right and we curve and we meet that line Neath up the bottom of it long vertical line so I can see what you were thinking but you know what the weather in my mind is not deep there's somebody else have an idea and let's say there's a Brian or Brianna and they say I think it's me and I Joseph same process of I know what you're thinking and I draw that weather also to the side and then say them but that's not the letter that's in my mind but I see what you're thinking and you're like Andy does start with us you do start making it B with a long vertical line okay let me give you a second clue now the second line we use from the right goes whether that's in my mind is a short horizontal line added at the very top of the long vertical line like this so I draw a short horizontal line to the right from the top of a large vertical line along there now this was trying to begins to really get interesting in terms of what children are thinking almost always someone will say gee I think it's two and I say to them and Renee could see over here I know what you're thinking because I just watched a lot of you when you've made a tea and you do make a long vertical line and then what you do often is you make a short horizontal line over this way to the right and then you make another one a short horizontal line over to the left but when I make my key and when a lot of adults make key here's how we do it we draw and I'm making a tea of course technology we don't we were too fine and then we start all over here away from the top of the vertical line and we go over to the right path vertical lines and I said so I use just one line I'm making a tea so T's not the letter in my mind and then someone also invariably will say L I know it's an L and again I know what you're thinking and I draw a long vertical line and then I put the short vertical line at the bottom for an L and then I point out to the children but I put mine at the top and you know when we're lagging letters when you put the line mattered exactly the same lines but just in different positions the Orient I don't say the children values if you orientation is a thing to feature of letters that doesn't exist in the three-dimensional world so they're not on to that so I so then I say okay let me give you a third clue so the third line in this Lotus and why not they go to the middle of a long vertical lines and then I draw another short horizontal line to the right now of course I have formed an F and a lot of children will be shouting out if it is an S is enough and I think it is but of course if II was the letter in my mind I might say to them that you know what that's not the one that was in my mind I have to add one more clue and I go to the bottom of the vertical line and put the last line of the easier so that is the letter clue game now um I guess you have noticed my language so let's just talk about the language learning first and and this is in on the second page of the handout two vertical line is terminology that I think is really not what children deserve I don't think I do this I'm going to mixed if I'm gonna make a little balloon no it's so it's a vertical and it's a long vertical line it's a short horizontal line I'm going to the very top I'm going to go to the middle here's the bottom um so the language is really very rich in this experience and then of course in terms of literacy skills naming letters obviously that's the really important critical learning here for letters this children are getting this big idea that very small changes or differences make a different letter and that's not true of many items that belong to the same category in the three-dimensional world and you may vary a lot cars vary a lot shares vary a lot everything there is a lot but not here this variation across fonts but you add more and more line at the bottom of the vertical one F you have made an F and now we're in we're in any territory if you don't close the top of your egg because maybe you don't know yes they're ages you are in a spirit or even though you don't know it so this is a wonderful wonderful game activity children love it they want to play more letters each day I always say the teachers I would just do one or two you always want to stop and they want more not when you beat an activity to Devon they're worn out but the other thing I caught your attention and Molly mentioned I think with the gritch conversation that there was some thinking and reasoning we'll talk about thinking and reasoning this is a real reasoning accident as thinking they're comparing they're using information they have the draw conclusions so the reasoning is wonderful so it is possible to have literacy skills and teach literacy skills a very thoughtful way and then this approach kindness a this was developed by a teacher in the musical who liked who I worked with and who worked for me in Alaska wonderful obvious it with all kinds of children and they're as popular but a good example of this new skills and language skills all rolled into one and again look at handout – it does it does review what what double earnings are for children lots of time here – reasonless okay so as we illustrate today create preschool teachers really must address both literacy skills and language related knowledge and skills we we just have to we have to do both preschool teachers can provide experiences in which instruction for both domains is integrated as illustrated in our examples and in this way preschool teachers really can indeed do it all thank you Judy and Molly for that packed with information session we have a number of excellent questions from listeners so I will try to fit as many in as I can during this the rest of our time scatter um first um what does the research say about teaching sight words and word families in pre-k um let me respond first mileage okay sure we know that I'm going to run ahead to kindergarten first and second grade beginning readers in the kitchen were beginning to read do you know that that knowing some sight words and a lot of these are acquired in the early readers that that are designed to teach such things in fact I can think of a series that really is all about side words now in terms of teaching them at the preschool level again I am NOT here's my problem I don't like lists of words that we teach directly I don't think it's necessary but I think we can do is in a lot of different contexts throughout the day day in and day out we can write things down now in the spring walk example the teacher actually wrote down like yellow daffodils was not a whole sentence obviously and what she did was look bikes and big rocks she just put big rocks and bike and there was a reason for that she didn't want to make it laborious but there are other situations where in a group or at the Ranger table or someplace I'll help too at mealtime conversations maybe you might have a piece of paper to write something down but you would you would write them naturally in in which you're what you're composing and then in books I think of book titles and talk about some side words I wish I had my pile of journal pleasure right here I told them but you know it does know a day or its melody I forget but um sight words are all over the place in book titles now you usually let me introduce a book the first time we underline the title and read it just for the information and I do not like I'm very opinionated here for someone to stop after the read a book silenceo does anyone see an A in one of those words no I want them thinking about but the book might be about don't like Lisa Phillips on that contest however having said that I do faces we underlined the print and we read and then SJ 2 days later remember some time you meet the same girl Creon your line and I find myself polishing at the beginning they already know the title pretty well and leaving them to look at the print and read with me there's a lot of exposure to sight words that can be done you can get that way so and now just in terms of some research though in terms of sight was taught in preschool I don't really know of any research that shows that that case off what I do know I'm thinking of David chars cheers Cheers work he makes the point that as children learn to read and they read even a new word short a number of times it becomes a sight word that what he calls phone washable recoding and chosen do pick up since language so I think there's plenty of time for it in the beginning readers in kindergarten I which I think there's a little too much stress on treating kindergarten frankly but there are books design uses that I would not spend my time deliberately in preschool teaching with a site with Molly what do you think I agree with everything you said Judy and I will second the notion that I don't know some research that shows that that pays off either and I also think we need to think about what we're saying about oral language and the preschool the early years and you know focus focus quite a bit on language and and how language is used and you know in the small group settings or the one-on-one where you can authentically tuck in some information about print as you said I think is the richest way to call attention to that but at any rate I don't have other things to add I think you said it very well and I think the knowledge of language you just mentioned extremely important it's part of what we do when we read even we're learning to read is we lose it with pulling from the language we have and in a sentence you know if a verb makes sense or an I make sense or you know we were likely to be helped greatly by that in decoding the print so okay next closest yeah what are some examples of strategies for supporting the language and literacy skills of preschoolers who have language development delays well I'll go first akin mulling I won't talk see wrong um you know I think good language contest and good preschool is good for everybody every child is learning language at the preschool I don't want to diminish the the fact that some children have considerable difficulty I think many children still have difficulties because they have not been exposed to a lot of time we can press entrepreneur wearing a second language or third to some but I think rich experiences where you really environment is there that we can refer to and talk about it's extremely helpful internal lab school and they would be nine or I think one year eleven different languages in a group of 18 children they were from all over the world and so you found yourself gesturing and it sort of honing in on keywords and then put in an envelope of a whole sentence so you would say it's own spoon this is your exponent that so in socialist they were having panic or something but I think um you know III think there is a place for the need for language specialists when there are children who have very specific language difficulties but when it comes to the classroom I think rich experiences in teachers who interact and talk with children and adapt and adjust to help them get meaning if you giving their meaning and they getting yours and it's just interacting all the time is paying attention so mildly whatever you think um I will agree with you wholeheartedly and just add a couple of pointers refinement I'm one of the things that that I am sending you a high-five for when you were talking about the rich language within the classroom is the importance of modeling by the teacher so yes to rich vocabulary I want to add clarity of expressions and teachers need to be clear not only in how they produce language but also how they structure language you know when young children have language dawei's sometimes we really don't know everything that's going on with that sometimes kids are misdiagnosed but yeah it cases where it's an expressive problem sometimes children outgrow that with rich support but their receptive knowledge is just fine so we don't want to create a contrived pond context or experience for them where we're just sort of running around producing language or making them use language and non meaningful ways so it ties back into what Judy said is good instruction is really needed and talking about things that are contextually in the environment I also think that talking about be contextualized are using decontextualized talk is very important for children's thinking now the cognitive load is higher and decontextualized talk refers to talking about things that are not in the here and now or the present environment so in conversations about what you did at the playground for example if you're sitting at snack but um the overall point is to provide really rich support and and recognize that there's more going on in a child than the delay and that goes for more than just language yes hey one other thing too if I think the role of songs and poems um that we used to do a lot of in preschool the form of it's the formulaic language mean which means that there is language there that is repeated and that you sing a song you know multiple days it's a poem that does help a child with delays to get a start but let's not forget the role of songs and poems in preschool I don't see enough of that anymore myself anyway but that was a good question and a difficult one and I think Molly the sorting out that's where I mean the speech and language specialist you really have to sort out you know what is going on here so they're not artificially saying there's a problem that's come time and maybe there isn't that problem exactly but true let me tuck in because I didn't before I'm storybook reading is so powerful for all children but especially for children who need repetitions and might be assisted learning language with visuals so read read read as part of a curriculum that you have for your classroom and choose good books to do so okay thank you this listener wonders if this is an appropriate activity for an older four to five year old pre-k class and that is when we are talking about our letter of the week in class we also sing a song about the letter sound we talk about words being made up of letter sounds I found that the children by the end of the school year because out short words on their own again do you think this is an appropriate activity for older for inside it well a couple comments about it first of all i'd i i'm not sure been fond of letter every week because i don't think we need to focus in that particular way the others comment I would make is and four and five-year-olds at the IO Penelope's four and five-year-olds know before I do that with them but I want to make the distinction between phonological awareness and phonics and it sounds like the activity here is phonics a saying that he makes a decent the does sound B makes the most sound so forth as opposed to and children do arrive at that knowledge acquire that knowledge when you do what I in the teacher who was writing daffodils and so daffodil so it was just I mean be to write that sound one of the confusions that children often have when you do this activity you're talking about four and five-year-olds where you teach phonics to three and four-year-olds is oh they can memorize the sound of the litter made and it's got it back what they don't understand is that the sounds we're talking about are the sounds of hearing we say word and I have to I need to become sensitive to hearing a sequencing fountain where itself I think you know what the four and five-year-olds and I'd also like to know what else they're doing in terms of writing and using knowledge to generate words and and so forth so you know it's hard out of context to say whether that is or is not appropriate for the children who are there but I would need to know what else will form fine No and remember that decoding is one thing and simple books are one thing and then we need to look ahead to the reasoning the challenging and the figuring out of more difficult words even as time goes on well they do then do they go say I can't do it too hard I don't know anyway good question so Judy and Molly a couple of listeners have wondered what you think about using dot-to-dot letters as a support when children are learning to write letters okay a great question I get that all the time I don't like got to that four letters I'll tell you why children go from 1.2 the map and typically in a dot to that roof sheets I've seen there's more than one dot we'll stay for the long vertical line in E and I children need to learn the strokes the the elements of the letters which the letter clue game models beautifully and often it's very interesting children don't necessarily perceive when they see a letter to be composed of the lines that we know it is so the t's a great example apparently no visual the visual profession by many preschoolers is the T is one vertical line if it goes up up all the way to the top and then there's a short line to the right to short on to the left so really there are just two segments and key for ease they often think that the top line the vertical line and the bottom liner just one one stroke so clutters the value of what acquitting is that shouldn't actually see the stroke that I would like to expose children to the actual stroke and then let them make the awkward letters that they will as they attempt to write and draw and whatever and not do doctor dot so because the doctor dots get in my way of communicating to children what the actual segments or outline elements are in letters and I just I don't think they're that useful now that's different from what I call using the selected dot sometimes okay is a famous example and children will say things like I can't get my kid look like because you know you you draw the vertical line and so we've done that and then they have to kind of guess we're out in space to the right I start to do the day I don't line into the middle so it depends on the child and but I'll say okay I'm going to put a dot over here to the right where you can start that's that diagonal line into the middle and there are other options other instruments right who selected diamonds but that's a bit later you know sometimes what comes up also our stencil letters for plastic frames and I do not like those either because for a different reason I'm the same reason but an additional one you know in development for fine motor skill that hand goes from being stiff and up off the table to being to resting on the table and and lonely fingers are holding utensil well to do stencils shouldn't have to hold the arm up to fit the end of the pencil or marker in too long so I'm working against us don't there in terms of just children you know gradually getting the arm and the hand to work the way that needed to so I don't find much as either I you know I I just you know I'm old now I just keep wishing that we could HM so according to trust children because we didn't need to teach needs a model needs to be a lot of input you know their knowledge comes from somewhere and we are somewhere on the other hand I wish that we could have some patience with children to let them then take what they see take what information verbally we did and to try it on their own and for us to be happy with this steps and the struggles along the way and what's interesting about the leather clothing with four-year-olds and if a year goes on we ensure that the writing-table I find most off sometimes and I say okay I had so long and sometimes I have a long vertical line it's a not very good vertical now now what's the second clue so they're asking they have soaked up in a way that there are segments and they are are drawn in certain order in a certain direction and then they'll they kind of use that framework and they'll ask the teacher and then you can give information but I find this by for a half and certainly sometimes early kindergarteners are so hard on themselves but they have been anyway I just um you notice I see there's something to be said for struggling and mother please please don't even view it as struggle and it's the best effort but to go through a process of my desk effort now and having that accepted and my desk efforts to release your now and to go to that process where you realize that your skill has changed and that you have worked on it I mean they don't view it as work I'll go there okay do the work pretty hard the writing-table sometimes on their own system vision to me and I think I want them to do that I think there's a larger lesson of learning there of what life is about some things take a while you have to work at it so um that's the long answer to what I think impastata got some central stuff guess that was the question we're so on okay Molly you get the next place I say we go around for 30 more minutes that's wonderful okay well thank you Judy and Molly we are unfortunately out of time employment thank you and all of our listeners for fitting in to wonderful conversation and that wraps it up thank you everyone thank you thank you

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