Scaffolding of emergent literacy skills in home environment

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The Scaffolding of Emergent Literacy Skills in the Home Environment: A Case Study

Harry was introduced to print from 2 years of age through an informal approach that was spontaneously elicited by encounters with environmental print. Piaget (as cited in Biehler and Snowman 1997) argued that children at this age can begin to attach oral words and symbols to physical objects. Typical examples of the environmental print used were signs; labels on food packaging; brand names on objects; text and labels on clothing; and written materials (e.g., shopping list). In addition, because environmental print is relatively stable (e.g., a STOP sign does not move and the label on the child’s favourite food packaging stays the same each week), Harry was provided with many repetitive and advantageous opportunities to engage with the same print and learn about the letters and words in a meaningful way (Kuby et al. 1999). Adams (1990) argued that children may learn to separate print from its non-print context through such repeated engagements with environ- mental print.

When Harry was 2 years of age, the mother initiated interactions that focused on scaffolding his ability to dif- ferentiate print from pictures and photos on environmental print. One such example occurred when the mother was making Harry a chocolate milk drink using the chocolate powdered product Milo. The mother pointed to the print and said ‘‘Look, that says Milo. Look at the ‘MMM’ for Milo it goes up, down, up down’’ while tracing the letter M with her fingers. She asked Harry where the cup was on the food packaging. He pointed to the picture of the cup enthusiastically saying ‘‘Cup’’. The mother pointed to the print again running her finger under the letters and said, ‘‘There’s the letter M for Milo’’, then they both pointed to the letters and the mother said ‘‘Look there’s an ‘O’. It goes around and around like the wheels of a car.’’ Harry and his mother moved their arms around and around in the air in the shape of the letter O. These types of print identification interactions were repeated on a daily basis and strength- ened Harry’s print awareness and motivation to explore letters further.

In this article, what are some ways Harry was introduced to print?

Where do we see examples of scaffolding in this article?

What are some of the activities Harry's parents did that you could share as tips for other parents?

Reference no: EM13251605


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