Have paper and pencil in the various play areas of the room. Encourage the child to make lists for grocery shopping in dramatic play, write a note to the principal in the literacy center, make signs for the roads and cars in the block area, create greeting cards in the art area, etc.
If the child does not spontaneously write, encourage her to do so by letting her know, “Whatever you write is fine. I just want to see how you are thinking about things.”
The child’s writing is now using mostly real letters or letter approximations.
As adults read to children, point out specific words or ask, “What do you think the first letter of this word sounds like?” Encourage children to write all the time, not just when practicing writing. Provide materials throughout the room to support their efforts. Children now begin to ask: “Is that right?” “How do you spell…?” “How do you make a letter…?” These questions are opportunities for teaching what the child wants to know at his own level.
North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, 2015
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