e-Learning for Educators
Course Information



Early Childhood Book Reading Practices
 
Course Description
    

Book reading in the early childhood classroom is not only one of the most important practices for building later reading success, but it is probably one of the more enjoyable experiences for both teachers and children.  In this workshop, early childhood educators will explore quality children's literature and best book reading practices.  Participants will learn ways to share various genres of books in the classroom.  They will learn the importance of multiple re-readings and strategies to foster children's vocabulary knowledge, print concepts, phonological awareness, and reading comprehension during large and small group readings.  Workshop assignments will invite participants to research quality children's literature and develop book reading planners with specific goals for children's learning.

This course has been designed for individuals who are currently teaching/certified to teach children in Pre-K-Grade 3.

 
Course Syllabus
    

Early Childhood Book Reading Practices

Course Description

Book reading in the early childhood classroom is not only one of the most important practices for building later reading success, but it is probably one of the more enjoyable experiences for both teachers and children.  In this workshop, early childhood educators will explore quality children's literature and best book reading practices.  Participants will learn ways to share various genres of books in the classroom.  They will learn the importance of multiple re-readings and strategies to foster children's vocabulary knowledge, print concepts, phonological awareness, and reading comprehension during large and small group readings.  Workshop assignments will invite participants to research quality children's literature and develop book reading planners with specific goals for children's learning.

Prerequisites:

This is an introductory course for teachers, technology specialists, curriculum specialists, professional development specialists and administrators.  Participants are expected to have regular access to computers.  Although not a requirement, high speed Internet access definitely enhances the online experience.  Participants should be proficient with using email, browsing the Internet, and navigating through computer files.  Access to Microsoft Office is recommended.  Participants who do not have access to Microsoft Office should download Open Office documents (a free download from Microsoft) to enable them to read and send word documents throughout this course. 

Goals:

This workshop will enable participants to:

  • understand how book reading impacts children's language and literacy development,
  • learn effective strategies for utilizing different book genres in the classroom,
  • understand how multiple readings of the same book can enhance children's cognitive and literary skills,
  • learn how to implement interactive book reading sessions that deepen children's comprehension,
  • learn ways to support vocabulary development through book reading, and
  • learn ways to integrate books and book reading into classroom curriculum activities.

Alignment to Standards

This workshop meets the standards for Content, Instructional Design, and Technology as defined in the National Standards of Quality for Online Courses, published by the International Association for K-12 Online Learning (iNACOL). 

This workshop provides teachers with an opportunity to meet the Engage in Professional Growth and Leadership standard as defined in the National Educational Technology Standards and Performance Indicators for Teachers, published by the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE). 

Alignment with the Standards for English Language Arts from the National Council Teachers of English (NCTE) and International Reading Association (IRA)

  1. Students read a wide range of print and non-print texts to build an understanding of texts, of themselves and of the cultures of the United States and the world; to acquire new information; respond to the needs and demands of society and the workplace; and for personal fulfillment.  Among these texts are fiction and nonfiction, classic and contemporary works.
  2. Students read a wide range of literature from many periods in many genres to build an understanding of the many dimensions (e.g., philosophical, ethical, aesthetic) of human experience.
  3. Students apply a wide range of strategies to comprehend, interpret, evaluate and appreciate texts.  They draw on their prior experience, their interactions with other readers and writers, their knowledge of word meaning and of other texts, their word identification strategies and their understanding of textural features (e.g., sound-letter correspondence, sentence structure, context, graphics).

Intended Audience

This workshop helps provide early childhood educators with an understanding of young children's oral language development and appropriate approaches for promoting language and emergent literacy in their classrooms.  Participants are expected to have regular access to computers and proficiency with email and current Web browsers.

Workshop Outline

Session One:  Effective Read-Aloud Practices

In this first session, you will learn about the significant impact book reading can have on young children's language and literacy development.  You will review your own book reading practices and complete a TROLL evaluation on a student.  Through the readings and activities in this session, you will begin to think about how to incorporate effective book reading practices into your daily curriculum.

Session Two:  The Classroom Book Area

Every early childhood classroom should have a comfortable and welcoming place for children to read and browse books with friends and adults.  In this session, you will read about ways to create an inviting book area in your classroom.  You will evaluate your space for book reading in your classroom and take inventory of the different types of books you have available.  Finally, you will develop a plan to improve your book reading area and selection of books.

Session Three:  Getting the Most Out of Nonfiction Books

Like a healthy diet, children need to experience a variety of genres of books.  Children, as well as the teachers, often have preferences for certain types of books, and narrative or storybooks are most often the first choice.  During this session, you will take a closer look at one type of book that is often left out of classroom libraries--informational or nonfiction books.  You will learn about ways to use this overlooked book genre and make a plan to incorporate them into your classroom library and curriculum.

Session Four:  The Importance of Multiple Readings

Repeated, interactive book readings provide children with rich opportunities for cognitive and language growth.  When children are provided with re-readings of the same story, they can discuss the storyline and vocabulary in more depth.  Re-reading also allows children to interact with the story by asking questions and talking about interesting parts.  Using the readings and video clips, you will learn about effective book reading strategies for repeated readings.  You will then plan for repeated readings of a selected book as part of your final project.

Session Five:  Building Vocabulary through Book Reading

Building children's vocabulary skills is one of the most effective ways to support language and literacy development.  Research shows a strong correlation between vocabulary knowledge and reading proficiency and later school performance.  This session will highlight key strategies you can use during book readings to develop and expand children's vocabulary.  You will read an article and view video clips of classroom teachers demonstrating different vocabulary building strategies.  You will also develop a plan for building vocabulary during a book reading.

Session Six:  Putting It All Together

Book reading can have a bigger impact on children's literacy development if connections are made throughout the curriculum.  During this session, you will read about meaningful ways teachers can integrate book reading into a curriculum topic.  As part of your final project for the course, you will develop a plan that encourages and extends book use during a curriculum study.