International Literacy Day is more than just a reminder of the impact a literate population has on society. It gives educators the opportunity to talk to students about what that the word “literacy” means, to underline its importance, and to celebrate the journey toward literacy as a class. Read on to discover fun ideas for celebrating this day with students of all ages.
- Set goals
When you talk about what literacy means, it’s important to highlight that literacy is a skill that develops over a lifetime. Understanding this helps put high expectations back in their place. You can celebrate Literacy Day by having students write or draw where they want to be on their reading journey a month from now, or one year, 5 years, and even 10 years out. Then create a display together that shows off their goals. This will serve a as a visual reminder to students as they continue their literacy journey.
- Meet an author
When students get to meet an author in person, it can be a motivating and even life- changing experience. This is especially true if they can identify with the author in some way. If getting someone high-profile to do a school visit isn’t feasible, don’t underestimate the impact a local writer can have. All students need to see is that people who look like them, talk like them, or come from a similar background, can design a future using the skills they’re practicing in school today.
- Play word games
When you play word games, kids learn to enjoy the process of acquiring new vocabulary, having fun with phonemics, or even practicing spelling. Games where you compare or contrast, build, and rhyme words are a big hit with students because you can adjust the skill level to meet them where they are and give them a little push forward while having fun.
- Enjoy an audiobook
Listening to engaging stories, even a short picture book, provides a break from the visual decoding students are working hard at mastering. Make listening to an audiobook a special reward by allowing students to find a comfy place on the carpet or rest their heads on their desks. Additionally, because students don’t have the pictures to cue them as they listen, it’s essential to discuss what the story is about to activate their background knowledge.
If you are looking for resources to support students on their literacy Journey, English-language programs like Discover Phonics and Connect, and Spanish-language solutions like La cartilla and Vista Level Spanish may be all you need to give them that extra push on their road to success.
By Kelli Drummer-Avendano