Learning to Read and Write: Developmentally Appropriate Practices for Young Children


The International Reading Association and the National Association for the Education of Young Children agree that experiences throughout early childhood affect the development of literacy. Those who teach young children—parents and child care providers as well as teachers in preschool and early elementary settings—need to support the literacy development of children in their care.

Most young children pass through five stages of literacy development:

  • Awareness and exploration
  • Experimenting with reading and writing
  • Early reading and writing
  • Transitional reading and writing
  • Conventional reading and writing
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