It is important for children to be able to recognise, name and write the letters in their name using the correct formation. You can help your child by encouraging them to:
- use a suitable pencil grip using the dynamic tripod grip (see attached sheet)
- point to and name the letters in their name
- only use a capital letter at the beginning of their name
- form letters appropriately and beginning at the correct starting point
Building independence and fine motor skills
The first year of school sets the foundation for lifelong learning and developme
nt of skills needed to succeed in life. All children will be encouraged to 'have a go' and build independence in a variety of ways.
Fine motor skills help children perform important tasks such as feeding themselves, grasping objects and writing. The ability to accomplish self-care and everyday tasks by using fine motor skills helps a child's self-esteem and confidence grow.
One way that you can support your child to be independent at school, is to encourage them to open and close lunchboxes, containers, bags etc.
Rhyming helps children learn about words, sounds and language formation. Hearing and using rhyme, rhythm and repetition helps children develop early literacy skill
s. The repetition of words, ideas and skills is important for early brain development, as it creates secure foundations for early learning.
Why do we teach sounds before letter names?
Until children understand that letters are representations of sounds in words, they should not be introduced to letter names. Teaching both letter names and sounds is confusing for children and increases the amount of cognitive load (the amount of information that working memory can hold at one time) on them. Teaching children the skills of segmenting and blending is important when learning how to read and write. It helps them to develop phonological and phonemic awareness
How does saying the letter names S AT enable us to hear the word 'sat'?
On the other hand, if we say the sounds /s/ /a/ /t/, we can straight away hear the word 'sat'.
However, it is important for children to know the names of the lett
ers in their name. This assists children when they are asked to spell their name out loud.
Learning to cut with scissors helps a child learn to do so much more than just cut!
Check out the great skills it builds below.
• Builds hand strength - Opening and closing scissors helps children build up the small muscles in their hands. These muscles are important for everyday activities such as drawing, using cutlery, brushing your teeth and getting dressed.
• Develops hand-eye coordination - Children learn to watch where the
y are cutting, using their eyes to guide how they should move next. This is important for activities such as playing sports, getting dressed and cooking.
• Learn to use both sides of their body - Cutting encourages children to do different things with each side of their body - one hand holds the paper whilst the other hand holds the scissors.This is called “bilateral coordination" and is important for everyday activities such as zipping up coats and pants, doing the dishes and writing.
• Improve attention - Using scissors to cut out shapes or cut along a line takes concentration and attention to detail. The ability to pay attention for longer and longer periods of time is important to be able to listen and learn in the classroom, read books and ride a bike.
Categorising is the act of sorting and organising things according t
o kinds, group, class or category.
Categories are important. Categorisation changes over time with learning from the way something looks, to the way it acts, to its function, etc. After a child is able to categorise cognitively, they can use these skills in their language. Categorising in language is important because it gives us a way to describe an item to others and provides connections between ideas.
Subitising is the ability to instantaneously recognise the number of objects in a small group without the need to count them. For example, on dice we immediately recognise the number of dots without having to count each one individually.
Why is Subitising Important?
Subitising is an essential part of developing number sense in children by helping them to relate numbers to actual groups of items. This is known as number conservation. It is not uncommon that young children learn to count by rote but do not really understand the meaning behind what they are doing.
By looking at groups of items, children can start to develop an understanding of how a number is made up: e.g., five dots could be a set of three dots and two dots, or a set of four dots and 1 dot.
This understanding of part-part-whole relationships helps children to separate and combine numbers and accelerates understanding of addition and subtraction.