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This easy-to-use resource offers 128 research-based tips for building the critical early language and literacy skills all young children need to develop before they start school. Highly practical ideas combined with a convenient calendar format make it easy to promote these skills in any setting and during any activity you may be doing with a child.
Monthly themes centering around language and literacy-building skills
Research section included each month highlighting the importance of that month's theme
128 tips to support children's learning during critical early years (2-5 years old)
Concrete ideas that can be applied at home or in the classroom
New tech tips to make the most of time spent with technology
Great collaboration tool -- The tips can be used by both parents and educators, helping them partner to weave language and literacy-learning into every part of a child's day.
Cost-effective support -- If you work in a school board or early learning centre, the calendar offers an affordable yet high-quality addition to the support packages you prepare for caregivers
Incorporating the newest research
To provide the best possible support to parents and educators, the Hanen Calendar reflects the most recent research on what helps children learn best, while also providing practical advice for incorporating that research into busy, modern-day life.
Our Calendar has always centred around creating powerful conversations, since we know that it's within these conversations that children learn language and literacy skills best. Some recent research has taken this even further, showing stronger links than ever between the number and quality of conversations children have and their future language and literacy success.
Some of the most recent findings include:
The number of back and forth turns in conversations predicts future language success
A new study has shown that the amount of back and forth conversations happening between children and their adult caregivers at 18-24 months predicts both language skills and IQ scores 10 years later.
The tips in the 2020 calendar offer dozens of creative ideas for building on children's interests to keep the conversation going back and forth for as many turns as possible.
Quality of conversation matters more than the number of words a child hears
A new study has shown that the amount of back and forth conversations a child has with his caregivers matters much more to his language-learning than the number of words he hears. Children who experience more back-and-forth conversations with adults show greater brain activity in the area responsible for higher level language comprehension, and go on to have better language outcomes.
The 2020 calendar helps parents and educators maximize both the quality of the conversations children are engaged in and the amount of the time children spend in those conversations. The tips span a wide variety of daily routines and activities, helping you turn any part of the day into an opportunity for conversation.
Tech time can be a great opportunity for learning when interaction is added
Many studies have shown that periods of solo screen time aren't helpful to a child's learning. But recent studies have also shown that when we add interaction and conversation to tech activities, we can create many opportunities for language and literacy learning.
The 2020 calendar recognizes technology as an important part of everyday life and offers monthly “On the Screen” tips to help you make the most of the time young children spend in front of a screen. Whether you're watching a video, using an app, or searching for something on the internet, tech time can be as good an opportunity as any to have rich conversations that build language and literacy.*
* The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends no more than one hour a day of screen time for children 2-5 years old. It's a good idea to balance tech activities with a variety of other, more traditional activities, like playing with toys and sharing books.
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