“The more that you READ, the more THINGS you will KNOW. The MORE you LEARN, the more PLACES you’ll GO!” — Dr. Seuss

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Happy 51st International Literacy Day! Today marks the start of a two-day conference in Paris with the theme “Literacy in a Digital World.” There, people from all over the world are discussing what skills are needed to succeed in a digital world and how to teach those skills, as well as what policies and technologies can support this teaching and learning.

Though teaching digital literacy to our students becomes more and more important every day, what’s always been important is teaching our students how to read. Learning to read isn’t just connecting groups of letters to sounds and ideas. Children need to understand what a book is, and that to read a book, they must flip pages to advance in the story, and that a story (and a book!) has a beginning, middle, and end. And it’s important that students start learning these skills at a young age. Studies have shown that children who cannot read proficiently in 4th grade are four times more likely to drop out of high school.

In honor of International Literacy Day, we’ve put together some resources that explain everything you need to know about early literacy. From why exactly early literacy is so important to facts and figures about literacy to ways to help young children develop their reading skills, these resources will help you to understand the power and value of early literacy, and what you can do to encourage and support it.

Why Does Literacy Matter?

What exactly is so important about being able to read?

Speaking Is Natural: Reading and Writing Are Not

Did you know that people are hardwired to learn how to speak, but need to be taught how to read and write? But with some teaching, most children are reading and writing by age 5.

Importance of Early Literacy

Literacy skills start to develop when kids are less than a year old, and providing kids with access to books is one of the best things you can do to help cultivate them.

Early Literacy: The Key to Fluency

Learning how to read at a young age acts as a “vaccination” against illiteracy, both in their native language and in other languages that use the same alphabet.

The Essentials of Early Literacy Instruction

There’s much more to early literacy than learning how to differentiate between there, they’re, and their. It starts much more basic with things like, how to hold a book, and how to connect sounds to images.

Response to Intervention in Reading

See how RTI is implemented in schools to provide early intervention for students at risk of reading failure.

If you’re looking for ways to encourage and foster early literacy in your classrooms, you have many options available to you! Making simple choices as you read aloud to your students, like using silly voices or running your finger along the words, can help build their literacy and reading skills. And for more formal options that you can integrate into your classroom instruction, be sure to check out Edgenuity’s® elementary solutions, which integrate with myON®, to give your students access to their own personalized digital bookshelf.

About the Author View all posts

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Laura Almozara

As a child, Laura spent a lot of time reading and telling stories, at one point reading a new book every day. She took that interest with her to college, where she studied English and journalism. She then started working in publishing and eventually made her way to edtech. As someone with several teachers in her family, Laura is excited to be a part of the Where Learning Clicks team, helping to provide innovative education tools to some of the people who need them most.