Preschool children learn a lot at this age through what they see, hear or touch. The learning process is as a result of interacting with their parents, siblings, teachers, caregivers, other adults, and from the surrounding. This is a very crucial age as whatever children learn at this age will determine their future performance in class as well as success in society. It is therefore very important for those dealing with these children to be very careful about the kind of message they pass across to the children. The paper also describes the criteria that a preschool teacher should use when selecting the literature material for preschoolers. In addition, the paper describes the goals that support the different stages of development of these preschool children and give strategies and teaching activities that support these development goals. Lastly, a description of literature program implementation and evaluation is also given.
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Criteria of selecting literature titles for preschool children
It is important for caregivers, teachers and parents to be careful when talking to, singing to and reading to the preschoolers as they learn a lot from them. These children also learn a lot from literature materials as these materials pass certain information to them and are used for different purposes. It is therefore important that adults choose these literature materials wisely. As a teacher in charge of preschool children, I will select literature material following certain guidelines. To start with, since all my pupils are aged 3-5 years, I will select materials appropriate to this age which in most cases is indicated in the book. In addition, because different literature passes a lot of information, I will select literature materials that are in line with the purposes that I have when teaching these children. For example, if my purpose is to help children to become responsible or develop relations, I will select materials that have these themes. In addition, if I want the children to acquire certain values or morals like honesty and obedience, I will select some storybooks that have characters that clearly demonstrate this and the consequences of not portraying these values (Brever, 1992, p. 367).
Moreover, I will select books that align with the interests of these children. These are the books that will make them laugh and answer some of the questions they may be having. For example, why does a cat stay inside the house while other animals do not? Additionally, since children learn from everything they see, touch or hear, I will select materials that have colorful pictures, rhyme, and are repetitive. I will also select materials that have objects familiar to them and that contain major events and people they come across almost every day (for example, parents and teachers). Lastly, I will select materials that help children to build their self-confidence and become more imaginative (Brever, 1992, p.456).
Developmental goals that support various developments of preschool children
There are many goals that support the language development of preschool children. According to Giorgis and Glazer (2009), Children will appreciate the creative use of a language that is appealing to them. One can achieve this by telling children the same story as many times as possible until they appreciate it. For example, an adult can come and share the story on goodness gracious me as many times as possible or let children listen to a tape on the same story.
The second goal is that children develop listening skills. The teacher or any other adult can promote the listening skills of the children by telling them to mention some words they know as they go on reading a book. As the teacher repeats this process, the children will be in a position to know the structure of the story and match the words in print to the one they are hearing and saying. Moreover, the teacher can let the children share the story with others.
The children will develop various skills in thinking processes. The teacher will help children achieve this by letting them observe different things. For example, when reading a story on the fox, the teacher can allow the children to see illustrations and let them tell what they think the animal could be (Giorgis &Glazer, 2009, p.274). Moreover, the teacher can tell the children to cut some pictures of animals and put them in a certain book then cover most part of the animal leaving only a small part of it and ask their classmate to name the animal. The other goal is that the children will participate actively in solving problems. Moreover, they will acquire new information and develop old information that they had. Lastly, they will be in a position to acquire new skills.
Giorgis and Glazer (2009) note that children make appropriate choices after weighing various views of the evidence. For example, a teacher can ask his/her pupils which activity they would like to be involved in after reading a certain story. In addition, children will be able to communicate well through both writing and orally.
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Social and Moral development
The children will be in a position to view a certain situation from many perspectives and participate in group activities. Moreover; they will also understand and portray social behavior (Giorgis & Glazer, 2009, p.275).
Aesthetic and creative development
The children will use, investigate and have control of different music and art styles as well as react responsively to these different styles development (Giorgis & Glazer, 2009, p.275).
Activities and teaching strategies that support at least one developmental goal for each area of development
One of the goals of learning a language is that children develop their listening skills. In this case, the teacher can read stories to children, for example, a story on the fox. As he or she reads the story, the teacher can ask the children to mention some of the words they have heard the teacher mentioning as she was reading the story (Giorgis & Glazer, 2009, p.278). Additionally, the teacher can engage the children in storytelling sessions and from the story that the children give, the teacher can ask questions on the same story. Moreover, the teacher can sing songs to the children and ask them to sing after him. The teacher can do this repeatedly until the children understand the songs and are able to sing after him. Lastly, the teacher can tell the children to tell their parents the story they were told during class lessons.
Children acquiring new information and developing old information that they had is one of the goals of intellectual development. To achieve this, the teacher can make the children read stories for example about Mrs. Biddlebox and help them see some of the causes of bad days (Giorgis &Glazer, 2009, p.278).In addition, the teacher can ask the children whether they have ever had a bad day and if yes what the causes were and narrate how they felt concerning the same. This is according to constructivism theory which states that people learn a lot from their experiences or other people’s experiences. Moreover, the teacher can read different stories on the same and also narrate one of the incidences when she also had a bad day. Additionally, to help children develop new information, the teacher should not just stop at reading the story but should also tell the children how they ought to react if they are angry or even when they are overjoyed.
One of the goals of personality development is that children will make appropriate choices. In this, the teacher will read stories to children and ask them to tell which activity they would like to be involved in. Additionally, the teacher can also tell the preschoolers a story that has different characters that did different things and ask them to tell which of the character they admire and why that is so. The teacher will, later on, tell the children the character that they themselves admire. Moreover, the teacher can pose questions to children on what they could do if they are given different choices. Later on, the teacher will explain to children the importance of making the right choices.
Social and moral
Children understanding and portraying social and moral behavior is one of the goals of their social and moral development. To achieve this, the teacher will allow the children to interact with other children in the class (Giorgis &Glazer, 2009, p.278). For example, through storytelling, games and singing in groups. Moreover, the teacher can invite a parent or another older pupil to come and talk with the preschoolers.
Aesthetic and creative
One of the goals for this is that children will use, investigate and have control of different music and art styles. In order to be able to do this, the teacher will tell the preschoolers to draw different things that they can see in class, the ones that are found at home and in the playing field (Giorgis &Glazer,2009,p.278). Moreover, the teacher will teach the children different songs and also give them a chance to sing. Additionally, the teacher will also let the children dramatize some of the stories they read and narrate what happens in their families.
Description of how I will implement literature program
After developing the above Literature program, I will collect the literature materials that I advocated for and bring them into the classroom after which I will share them with the children. In addition, I will read these materials to children and write down their responses in a certain book or fill in my checklist as children listen to the different stories that I will read to them. Moreover, I will let the children view a story shown in a video repeatedly after which I will tell them to retell the same story to the class. Additionally, I will develop teaching guides and make them available to all preschool children educators including their parents as I encourage them to participate in educating these children.
Evaluation plan to assess the effectiveness of my literature program
I will develop specific goals and objectives for each lesson and find out if the children have achieved them by the end of the lesson. Additionally, I will assess children’s development by the end of the year so as to know the appropriateness of the material and language used. In addition, I will keep on monitoring the children’s behaviors to find out if they are showing any changes. For example, do children reread or look at the illustration we have gone through together, do they read these books during their own free time and how do they respond to the stories I am reading to them. Moreover, I will check whether children have grown in their language, personality, intellectual, creative, aesthetic, moral and social aspects (Giorgis &Glazer, 2009, p.280).
The paper describes the criteria that a preschool teacher should use when selecting the literature material for the preschoolers and the goals that support the different stages of development of the preschool children. It also describes the strategies and teaching activities that support these development goals and also gives a description of literature program implementation and evaluation. Literature materials for preschool kids should be chosen wisely depending on the age of the children, the purposes of the material and the interests of the children. The teacher and other adults involved in educating these preschool kids should involve the kids in activities that help them develop their literacy and different skills such as listening, communication and thinking skills. The teacher should also use strategies that will help the children achieve the various goals in their different stages of development and there should be a mechanism to monitor the effectiveness of the program.
- Brever, J.A. (1992). Introduction to early childhood education: Preschool through Primary grades. Boston, MA: Ally & Bacon.
- Giorgis, C., & Glazer., J. (2009). Literature for Young children. Supporting Emergent Literacy, Ages 0-8. (6th Ed.). Boston: Pearson Education, Inc.