Building Language & Literacy with Infants

By Dana Brumm, Curriculum Specialist for Ebenezer Child Care Centers

The interactions that young children have with literacy materials such as books, paper, and crayons and with the adults in their lives are the building blocks for language, reading and writing development. A lot of fun activities can help infants be prepared for reading, writing, and other literacy experiences as they grow and develop. Here are some ways our teachers are promoting pre-literacy opportunities for your child.

Pre-emergent writing
Before young children are able to hold a writing utensil, they use their fingers to draw or “write.” Our babies are running their fingers through  gooey substances or squishing pudding between their   fingers building manual dexterity. These new skills sure make play time even more fun! The teachers watch the babies grow more independent and increasingly confident as they   master small motor skills to develop the building blocks for beginning writing.

infant finger painting 2         infant finger painting




Infant Scribbling

Crayons, markers or other writing instruments that are easy for infants to grasp and hold work best. Making marks and scribbling come naturally to most children.

infant scribbling 2 infant scribbling





Book Handling Behaviors
These behaviors are related to a child’s physical manipulation or handling of books, such as page turning and chewing.

infant book handling