Precious Early Literacy Development 珍貴的早期讀寫能力

Updated: Aug 7

I am designing a Chinese/English picture book-based early literacy curriculum for my daughter, and am planning to share with you. 我正在設計一個以中英文繪本為主幹的早期讀寫能力課程給我的女兒,也想和大家分享~

Dear Daughter reading The Mouse Who Ate the Moon, one of my recent favorites. 女兒在看《小老鼠吃月亮》——我近來的最愛~

Early literacy development, also known as emergent literacy development or pre-literacy, starts from birth to the time they learn to read and write on their own. People often ask when we should start teaching our children to read and write, not noticing our children start learning to read and write right from birth. 「早期讀寫能力發展」從小孩出生就開始了,直到孩子學習自己閱讀和寫字。很多人關注什麼時候應該開始教小孩閱讀和寫字,大家未必發覺小孩出生就開始學習讀寫。


Declaration: I am a language teacher who teaches all ages—children, teens, adolescents, and adults (including the elderly), but I am not specialized in Early Childhood Education. This article is largely based on my observations and personal teaching experience. Other parents or experts, feel free to chime in with your expertise and experience! 聲明:我只是一位任教不同年齡層(幼兒、小童、年青人、成人,包括老人)的語文老師心山,並非幼兒教學專家。這篇文章是根據我的觀察和經驗而寫的。其他家長或專家,歡迎留言分享心得!


In this article, we will discuss: 在這篇文章中,我們會探討:

  1. language skills babies and toddlers learn at early literacy stage 嬰兒及幼童的早期語言發展

  2. how parents may foster children's early literacy development 家長可以如何幫助小孩的早期語言發展

  3. why I am developing a curriculum using picture books 為何我會以繪本作為課程大綱


Language Skills during Early Literacy Development 早期語言發展


We are so used to using our languages and may have forgotten that we actually learn the languages bit by bit. The following are some of the important language skills infants or toddlers acquire from birth: 我們太習慣使用我們的語言了,有時候可能忘記從前是如何一點一點的學習語言,以下是其中一些孩童從出生就開始學習的重要語言技能:

  1. Communication experience 交流經驗: We need to understand the communicative functions of language in order to become competent readers and writers. Oral communication experience allows children to understand the function of language easily. In fact, young children learn well what different sounds, gestures, facial expressions and, later, phrases mean in oral interactions, because they do not need to worry about the use of words. Even babies are learning all the time. When my girl was seven months old, she was able to communicate even with strangers, and a few strangers told me they were amazed by her communicative skills! 我們要知道語言具交流作用才會真正懂得閱讀、寫作,說話交流可以讓小孩輕易明白這個語言的功用。其實,小小孩最懂得什麼聲音、動作、臉部表情或(後來)詞彙是什麼意思,因為他們還沒有學會文字,可以專心分析這些。小寶寶每天都在學習語言交流的技巧,我女兒七個月的時候,就有好幾個陌生人跟她交流,又告訴我她很會表達。

  2. Phonological awareness 聲韻覺識: Phonological awareness is the ability to identify and manipulate sounds. For multilingual children, they need to listen and identify what sounds are in one language system and what are not. Once I was talking about joining something 參加 (caam1 gaa1) in Cantonese. My daughter (2.5 year old at that time) kept asking me what restaurant it was. I did not understand her until I thought about the pronunciation of the words. The word 餐廳 "restaurant" (caan1 teng1) starts with the /c/ sound, which is also how 參加 "join" starts! I, a grown-up and a language lover+teacher, did not even notice the sounds. I don't have time to write about it now, but learners who do not know how to read or write seem to have developed a special ability to remember and learn the sounds of a language. 聲韻覺識就是能夠辨別和使用不同的聲音的能力。對於要學習多於一種語言的小孩來說,他們要學會分辨哪些聲音屬於這個語言,什麼不屬於。有一次,我跟兩歲半的女兒談到「參加」什麼,她卻追問我什麼餐廳。直到我想起「參」和「餐」都是/c/音開始的,我才明白她為什麼會有這個聯想。我作為大人,又是語文老師和語文愛好者,竟然沒有想到!由於篇幅有限,這次就不跟大家討論不會讀寫的人的辨音超能力了。

  3. Print experience 文字體驗: Children need to learn how writing communicates (in ways similar to or different from oral interactions). They need to learn from where they start to read a book, direction of the text, different purposes of different kinds of texts, etc. All these will shape what kind of writers they will be in the future. 小孩子要學習書寫是如何達到溝通的目的(有什麼地方跟說話相似,有什麼不同)。他們要學習從哪裡開始看一本書、文字的方向、不同文字有什麼不同的目的等。這些都會影響日後他們的寫作。

  4. Symbolic literacy 符號分析力: Children need to learn to attend to features or shapes in symbols and then learn how to decipher symbols they have never seen. Simple symbols that we use a lot such as arrows and speech bubbles do not communicate anything to children unless they learn what they mean. 小孩需要學習留意符號的特徵和形狀,然後才能學習分析未曾見過的符號的意思。我們常用的簡單符號(如箭頭和代表說話的那朵雲)對小孩來說沒有意思,除非小孩學懂它們的意思。

  5. Letter/character recognition 辨認字母/中文字:With exposure to print and reading, children start to learn the symbols of alphabet or Chinese characters represent something. 小孩接觸文字或閱讀,慢慢會發現字母或中文字這些符號代表著什麼。

  6. Letter/character-sound correspondences 字母/中文字和聲音的關聯: In English, alphabet and sounds are not in one-on-one correspondence; In Chinese, symbols do not usually tell the sound of the characters. However, children will notice that all words written can be read. Research also has it that it is much harder to write a language if you do not know the sounds. This is why reading and talking to children are so important. We are laying their reading/writing foundations. 英文字母的發音並非只有一個音,中文字的符號也未必能告訴你那些字怎麼讀,不過,小孩會留意到每個寫出來的字都可以讀出來。研究也指出如果我們不知道某種語言有什麼聲音,我們很難可以寫那種語言。因此,和孩子閱讀和聊天很重要,我們是為他們的寫作立下根基。


[Amazon affiliate links below 下面是行銷推廣連結]


How to Foster Early Literacy Development 如何幫助小孩的早期語言發展


Remember this acronym PICTURES when you try to help your young children with their early literacy development. 幫助小孩發展早期語言能力,請記住PICTURES(圖畫):


Play with them. Language learning is not about the language only; it connects to children's identities and their connections with their family and friends. 和他們一起玩(play)!學語言從來不只是語言的事,它關係到個人身分問題和與家人、朋友的關係。


Invite them to help you as much as possible. For example, when you cook, invite them to wash and cut vegetables for you. They will then see and touch and smell the vegetables. Real life experiences help them understand written texts. 盡可能邀請(invite)他們幫忙。例如你做飯的時候,邀請他們洗菜、切菜,這樣他們可以看、摸、閒那些蔬菜。現實生活的體驗可以幫助他們理解書本中的文字。


Care for them as themselves. Don't compare with other children. Especially during such an early stage, children develop in different ways. Observe constantly what they do well, what they are learning, and what they are interested in before forcing your teaching. 愛他們(care for them),不跟別人比較。尤其在這麼早的階段,每個小孩的發展都很不一樣。強行教學前,時常細心觀察,看看他們有什麼做得好,什麼有進步,和有興趣學些什麼。


Take them out! Real life experience is essential for understanding the world and finally what is written in books. 帶(take)他們出去走走!要認識世界和書本所說的,就一定要有生活體驗!


Understand their needs and development. Before teasing, blaming or punishing them, listen to them. Young children rely on repetitions in order to learn a language. Read the story for them even if you have read it a thousand times! 了解(understand)他們的需要和發展。開玩笑、怪責他們前,先聆聽。幼兒喜歡透過重覆學習語言,就算你讀了一千次,請務必繼續講給他們聽。


Read. Read. Read. Repetitions help. They might learn the sounds in one reading and try to comprehend the meaning in another reading. Understanding and remember the stories give them a sense of achievement, building their reading confidence. 閱讀(read),閱讀和閱讀。在一次閱讀中,小孩可能留心語言的聲音,在另一次閱讀,他們可能關注內容。當他們明白又記得一些故事,他們會有成就感,這樣可以幫助他們對閱讀有信心


Engage them in learning. When I say learning, I mean everything they do. They learn all the time. Different kinds of activities allow them to understand an object, a topic, an issue, etc. more thoroughly. 讓他們投入(engage)學習。我說「學習」,其實是所有他們會做的事情。不同的活動可以幫助他們更全面認識一件物品、一個題目、一件事等。


Sing. Singing helps young children notice the sounds and practice making them. Singing together is a good bonding activity and also creates wonderful memories for their language learning journey. 唱歌。唱歌幫助幼兒留心語言的聲音,又提供練習發音的機會。一起唱歌還可以增進感情,也為他們的語言學習之旅創造美好的回憶。



Dear Daughter set up everything herself to tell stories to her cousin over Facetime. 女兒自己擺放好一切,為電話中的表弟講故事。



Why a Picture Book-Based Curriculum? 為何課程以繪本為本?


Some reasons are: 其中一些原因包括:

  1. Picture books contain beautiful language. 繪本文字優美。

  2. Pictures help children understand the text better. 圖畫可以幫助小孩理解文字。

  3. Stories help them understand abstract concepts such as emotions and kindness better. 故事幫助小孩明白抽像的概念,例如情緒和善良。

  4. Picture books are interesting and beautiful! 圖畫書有趣又美麗!



Teaching Guide & Materials

教學手冊和教材


Apart from using picture books, I create learning materials for my daughter too. I am happy to share with you. 除了使用繪本,我還會製材教材,亦喜歡和大家分享~


For example, today, I would like to share with you this Day and Weather Chart and my calendar. Again, it has both traditional Chinese and English, and I have put down Pinyin to help me pronounce the Mandarin. I use the Day Chart with Eric Carle's The Very Hungry Caterpillar. The weather card is there to mark which day it is. 例如,今天,我要和大家分享我的星期與天氣表,還有月曆。上面有繁體中文和英文,普通話拼音是給我看的。星期表是看Eric Carle的《好餓的毛毛蟲》時使用的,我用天氣來表示今天是星期幾。

Day & Weather Chart 星期與天氣表

Feel free to download the calendar and weather cards in black and white or color: 歡迎下載黑白或彩色版本(To enable free download, use this coupon code: calendar 請使用優惠碼「calendar」以免費下載):


Black and white icons from the Noun Project:

Color icons from Flaticon


If you are interested... 如果你有興趣......

If you are interested in my picture book-based curriculum for preschoolers, please sign up as a member to this site. I will share the teaching guides and materials with members only. 如果你對我的繪本為本幼兒課程有興趣,請登記做會員,我只會跟會員分享我的教學手冊和教材。



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