Thursday, March 5, 2015

Early Literacy in Everyday Places: The Car

Whether the trip you're taking is long or short, the car is the perfect place to have fun with early literacy. Here are some suggestions for making the most of your car rides:
  • Look for out-of-state license plates. Encourage your child to look for unfamiliar license plates and to figure out which state is printed on them based on the letters they start with. If you're on an especially long drive, keep a list of all the states you see and challenge your child to be the first to spot one you haven't found yet. 
  • Put kids on the lookout for signs.Car trips can seem really long for kids who can't tell time. Break up the trip into kid-friendly segments by having your child watch out for particular signs that you know are coming up on the roadside. Give them clues as to how many letters are in the word they are looking for, or what letter the word starts with and ask them to "help" you by letting you know when they can see the sign. 
  • Listen to an audiobook.Listening to a well-produced audiobook is a treat for kids and parents alike. Choose something that will appeal to you and your child and pause now and then for discussion and predictions. This is a great way to work some relaxing reading into your vacations! 
  • Play the Alphabet Game. There are many variations on this game, and the one you use will depend on the age of your children. Some play it as a letter hunt, where everyone looks for the letters of the alphabet, in order, on the signs and vehicles they pass. Others choose a category and attempt to name something in that category for each letter of the alphabet. Another possibility is to choose one letter and name as many things as you can that start with it.
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