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Integrating Environmental Print Across the Curriculum, PreK-3

Integrating Environmental Print Across the Curriculum, PreK-3
Making Literacy Instruction Meaningful

December 2006 | 160 pages | Corwin

From billboards to lunch boxes, environmental print offers a powerful springboard to literacy!

While learning to read and write takes time, there are effective ways to tap into what children already know and to use that information to jump start the literacy process. One way is through environmental print (EP), the print that surrounds children in their daily lives.

Integrating Environmental Print Across the Curriculum, PreK–3, provides a wealth of activities that build literacy skills during time devoted to language arts, math, science, social studies, art, and dramatic play. Highlighting research from the National Reading Panel, the authors demonstrate that by activating prior knowledge and creating opportunities for authentic learning, EP is an effective tool in developing the early literacy skills of all children, including English language learners and those at risk for, or identified with, special needs. Each activity specifies grade range, materials, and instructions to help you:

  • Meet the goals of Early Reading First and Reading First
  • Assess children's ability levels in performing the activity
  • Strengthen concepts with related literature and songs
  • Communicate ways that parents can use EP with their children

This friendly, research-based book is designed to assist you in creating an environmental print program that promotes the development of strong literacy skills for every child!

About the Authors
1. What We Know About Environmental Print and Young Children
The Conceptual Framework for Using Environmental Print  
What We Know About Early Literacy  
Research on Environmental Print  
Environmental Print and Children With Special Needs  
Environmental Print and No Child Left Behind  
Summary of the Research Findings on Environmental Print  
Appropriate Ways to Use Environmental Print Throughout the Curriculum  
2. Language Arts Activities
Daily News  
Posters and Signs  
Writing Experiences  
Literacy Across Thematic Units  
Rebus Stories  
Wall Lists and Bulletin Boards  
Pocket Charts  
Text Innovations  
Word Boxes  
Book Boxes  
Newspaper Ad Word Search  
Alphabet Scavenger Hunt  
Environmental Print Walk  
Restaurant Menus  
Alphabet Wall/Community Alphabet  
Alphabet Books  
Reading Inside the Box  
3. Math Activities
Math Games  
Math in an Integrated Curriculum  
M & M's Math  
Newspaper Ads  
Food Labels  
Enlarged Class Texts  
Grocery Store Surveys  
Food Groups  
4. Health and Science Activities
Making Flavored Milk  
Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches  
Making M & M's Coookies  
Making Chicken or Vegetable Stew  
Making Pizza  
Making Pancakes  
Pretend Shopping  
Real Shopping  
Good Food Versus Junk Food  
Snacks--How Good Are They?  
Where Does Food Go?  
Pretend Restaurant  
Matching Toothpaste  
Planting Seeds  
Using Cardboard Containers  
Weather Symbols  
Going on a Picnic  
5. Social Studies Activities
Using the Newspaper  
Postcard Travel  
Mapping the Community  
Community Helpers  
Transportation Schedules  
Home Sales and Rentals  
Environmental Print Graphs and Elections  
Careers and Environmental Print  
Social Studies "Me Books" and Journals  
Culturally Diverse Environmental Print  
6. Creative Dramatics, Music, and Art Activities
Art Collage  
Studying Artists  
Neighborhood Mural  
Me Boxes and "Myself"  
Delivery Vehicles  
MUSIC--Songs for Commercials  
Creative Dramatics--"Centers" Stage  
Musical Instrument Time  
Can You Make a Puppet?  
7. Meeting the Goals of the National Reading Panel Through Environmental Print Activities
Phonemic Awareness Activity: Starts Like...  
Phonics Activity: Blended Environmental Print  
Fluency Activity: Speedy Shopping List  
Vocabulary Activity: What Goes With This?  
Comprehension Activity: Where Do You Find It?  
Conclusion: Challenges and Opportunities in Using Environmental Print
Reflective Teaching  
Transformational Teaching  
Resource A. Environmental Print Book List  
Resource B. Sample Letter to Parents  

"Having children bring in environmental print items with which they have had experiences gives them a feeling of ownership in learning to read. They share their experiences and these experiences, in turn, have a profound effect on their literacy development."

From the Introduction

"With built-in performance ratings per activity, teachers will find this a key to meeting reading goals and assessing and strengthening a child's ability levels."

California Bookwatch, March 2007

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