Early Literacy

Early literacy is what children know about reading and writing before they can actually read or write. The period between birth and five years old is the time to lay the foundation for future success in school. St. Louis County Library is committed to promoting early literacy within the community. Incorporate these skills into your daily interaction with your child. Enjoy our story time programs that promote early literacy skills your child needs to enter school ready to learn to read.


Five Strategies for Creating a Reader

The following activities not only are fun but also actually help your child acquire skills needed to become a great reader.


  • Reading
  • Find materials that you and your child will be enthusiastic to read and share. Look for books that are visually appealing to your child. Make sure that time for sharing books is an enjoyable time for both of you. Take a small amount of time each day to share reading with your child. Even a few minutes makes a big difference.


  • Singing
  • Playing around with animal sounds and singing songs or nursery rhymes helps children isolate sounds in words. Sing some of your favorites or encourage your child to help you make up songs with silly sounds. It is a great way to create a reader and you can do it most anywhere.


  • Playing
  • Playing really does help children become readers. Encourage imaginative play to help stimulate your child's creativity. Children can make up stories as they are playing. Playing with puppets is a great way to start.


  • Talking
  • Children need to have a vocabulary of 3,000-5,000 words by the time they enter school. How can you help? Quite simply, talk to your child, no matter what age, and encourage your child to talk to you.  The bonds you forge will last a lifetime.


  • Writing
  • Point out differences and similarities between letters and shapes. Provide your child with safe opportunities to handle a pencil or crayon to enhance fine motor skills. Scribbles are the first form of writing for young children.

Story Time

Songs & Finger Plays

Here are some fun activities to enjoy with your young child. For more ideas, visit the kids' blog.

Fuzzy Wuzzy Caterpillar

The Moon Is Round

Five Green and Speckled Frogs

Flip for Literacy!

FLIP for Literacy!

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