A website of resources for educators & parents
to help children navigate through Early Childhood.
Brain cells, or neurons, communicate with one another through connections called synapses. Strings of neurons and synapses form roads or pathways through which information flows. In infancy and early childhood, these neural pathways - similar to highway systems - become highly developed. As the child matures, information highways that are well traveled expand, mapping the way for the individual to become more proficient in those skills. Information highways less traveled make communication between neurons more difficult. On those less-traveled roads of information and experience, the individual is less able.
The act of illustrating: Interpreting a story through imagination is one of the joys of reading. In addition, illustrating a story promotes the development of the following literacy skills: stimulates creativity, encourages visualization, strengthens attentive listening for detail, promotes the recall of detail, orders the sequence of events, interprets character attitude, emotions, and tone, analyzes cause and effect supports literal comprehension, supports interpretive comprehension, supports critical comprehension, supports creative comprehension.
Directions: Print the text from one of the story-poems below. Read it to your child, giving him the opportunity to illustrate the content. We recommend that your child make a pencil drawing first, coloring in the details using crayons.
During one Christmas season, I met a modern-day wise man.
The old man walked into my classroom to thank me for what we would later call "the fourth gift.
On his behalf, I share his message with you now
The school halls were empty and the janitor was making his final rounds. I was just stacking the last supplies for holiday storage when the classroom door opened. A thin, elderly gentleman stood in the doorway, his white hair and ragged clothes dimmed by the late afternoon shadows. For a moment I thought he belonged down the hall, in the now empty manger scene. When he inched closer I could see his eyes glistening, tears staining his weathered cheeks. As he extended his hand, he whispered, Thank you for teaching my little girl how to read. Then he turned and walked away.
I stood and watched his bent frame shuffle down the dimly lit corridor, his foster daughter clinging to his outstretched hand. To this man who could not even pen his own name, the child held a treasure as precious as gold. She could read.