Five Components of Every Child Ready to Read: Singing

October 15, 2022 | Emily Gingras
"Five Components of Every Child Ready to Read"; Hispanic grandmother sitting with granddaughter at a laptop, reading and smiling

Every Child Ready to Read is an initiative created to provide caregivers and families with resources to support their child’s early literacy development. As a parent or caregiver, you are your child’s first and best teacher and the ECRR initiative provides tools and resources to help your child enter school with the skills that they need. It is more and more common that children will go into kindergarten without the skills they need to succeed, which can negatively affect all areas of development. Only 51% of Orange County children were deemed “ready for kindergarten” according to scores received by the Florida Department of Education from the Star Early Literacy Assessment in Fall of 2021. Early Literacy development involves all areas of development, including cognitive or thinking, physical, social, emotional and language development. ECRR focuses on five early literacy components to promote these areas of development. The five early literacy components of ECRR include reading, writing, talking, singing, and playing and the Orange County Library System uses all five of these to create family-centered programs and events. All five components are essential and can be promoted in day-to-day life with your child.

Music and movement play an amazing role in language development and memory. Singing can help to slow down words so children can hear them better and can introduce them to new words that are less common in everyday conversation. Adding elements of movement such as hand motions and dance moves can promote language development. When your child is having fun and making silly moves to go with the words of the song, more of their brain is activated and they will be able to form more connections. These connections build your child’s understanding of the world around them and promoting these can support your child's overall development.


Mom and toddler seen from behind, watching musicians on stage at the Orlando Public Library


Singing can help introduce children to new topics in a fun, engaging way and music can be found everywhere. There are children’s books that go to a song or can be sung as you read. Household objects can make many different noises you and your child can explore, such as shakers, bells, pots, and pans. Exploring the musical abilities of your environment can also provide teaching moments for your child where you can help support their understanding of the world around them. Making songs for everyday tasks can help your child’s emotional regulation or self-control. For example, while sitting at a red light or waiting for something to load, sing a song or create a fun chant about what you want to see. “Let’s go, green light, let's go!” Do not worry about how your voice sounds. If you are having fun, so will your child.

In the future, your child’s understanding of concepts such as phonemic awareness, letter recognition, rhythm and more will play a significant role in learning and working. Singing allows children to hear the sounds in words more clearly, and promotes listening and focus. When your child goes to school, listening to directions, focusing on what is being said and understanding it enough to apply what they heard will set your child on the path to success both at home and at school.

Check out our Q&A with Emily to learn about her work as an OCLS Intern and as a student at the University of Central Florida, College of Community Innovations and Education.

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