It’s been a while since my last post but end of year events such as 6th class graduation etc have kept me busy.
For today’s post I’m taking inspiration from Little Miss Teacher Blog and I want to focus on everyday literacy at home during this time of Distance Learning.
Free writing is an important part of Literacy at every level, even in the junior and senior infants classes. And you can incorporate lots of free writing at home too.
Chalk boards and Outdoor Chalk
I spotted chalk boards in Dealz today and thought how handy they could be in a kitchen for smaller children. Let them draw a picture or write down a shopping list as stuff disappears from the fridge. Even younger children could try approximate spellings to add shopping to the list. Similarly if you have a whiteboard or magnetic board in the house, get your children to write notes or surprise someone with a kindness note on the whiteboard. As weeks go on, children are often left at home while parents head out for shopping so why not keep them involved by letting them have their own list (within reason of course).
Use Outdoor chalk to write kindness notes for anyone who walks past, draw pictures or write their names outdoors too. As in previous blog posts I love Outdoor Chalk and recommend it for every age group. At my own school we had a Craze of the Week on yard and each week we had new activities, equipment or games. Our most popular activity was the Outdoor Chalk, maybe not for the parents as they came home covered in chalk dust each day.
Magnetic Letters are available in lots of shops and online too. While most of the time you see magnetic letters in Upper Case you can find them in lower case online. Children can use these on the fridge or magnetic board at home to make their own words or even to identify their name using the letters.
Post Its and Stationery
Post Its are a huge hit with all children. I used them all the time in Aistear with my infants. They could label their constructions, write lists, make signs for their play areas, endless possibilities really. I used to have all the fancy stationery in my writing area. Hauls from Dealz and Euro Giant for cute and fluffy pens, pencils and stationery with their favourite characters on it. All the small things to encourage them to engage in any form of free writing.
Other ways to engage in Literacy at home is to focus on a Picture Book a day. This could be used for all children regardless of age. Listen to one of your favourite stories on CD, Audible, Alexa or YouTube and have your child visualise the story and draw their own illustrations.
Read through the story and make some simple finger puppets to represent the characters of the story. You could also make puppets with lollipop stick and use a large box to make a puppet theatre, or use cereal boxes to make a table top puppet theatre like on this video. Children can retell the story or create their own puppet show based on a familiar picture book.
Use Picture Books to engage in different STEM activities. Build something to help a character in the book, design a stage for your puppets there are so many activities that you could do with just a picture book as your stimulus. Follow Playful Classroom on Facebook and Instagram for more ideas on Picture books at home.
These are some ways to incorporate Literacy everyday at home. If you want any more information on anything mentioned above, please send me a DM.