Literacy, the ability to read and write, develops from oral language competency in the first five years of a child’s life. This inner language developed is built on formally, at school age, when learning is taken to the next level, attaching symbols to sounds in words (phonology) understanding the meaning of what is being written or read (semantics) including interpreting pictures associated with print. Rhyme knowledge is also part of this development.
Children learn to initially listen to words that “sound the same” and later, when they acquire grapheme knowledge they can then apply this to their written work, the basis of which is correct spelling. Many children, may struggle with this continuum, for a variety of reasons, even into their adult life, if not detected early and appropriate intervention provided.
As a speech language therapist I provide the link between language and literacy. This after all is a ‘community responsibility’ from early childhood to the workplace.Contact Annette