Early Literacy Storytimes @ your library: partnering with Caregivers for Success, by Saroj Nadkarni Ghoting & Pamela Martin-Diaz
Saroj Ghoting's early learning website
Check out Saroj's video clips demonstrating how to incorporate early literacy tips into storytimes!
What is an effective early literacy aside?
Example of an aside
Explain aside - phonological awareness
Empower aside - print awareness
Empower aside - shape book
All three early literacy asides
Using factual books
Making a rhyme interactive between adult and child
Empower aside using handout
Nursery rhymes/song: pop! goes the weasel
English as a Second Language
Snips and Snails and Puppy Dogs’ Tails: Every BOY Ready to Read @ your library" Dr. Leonard Sax, psychologist, family physician, and author of Why Gender Matters, presented at the ALA Annual Conference in Washington, D.C., on Sunday, June 24, 2007.
Over 350 librarians attended Dr. Sax’s session. Dr. Sax has an unique background as a family practice physician with a doctorate degree in child development, from the University of Pennsylvania. Dr. Sax travels the country and the world speaking to educators and parents, but this was the first time he had addressed a group of librarians. He has a new book being published in August, Boys Adrift. For more information, visit Dr. Sax's website at http://www.boysadrift.com
Dr. Sax cited recent research that shows:
- Only 1 in 10 boys read “for fun”
- Boys are disengaging from reading at a much earlier age. Many boys used to stop reading for fun in middle school; it is now around the age of 5-6.
- Reading for fun has become a marker of gender identity – girls do it, boys don’t
- For white, black, and Hispanic boys, reading is totally “uncool”, and boys of these cultures who do read for fun, hide the fact that they like to read from other boys
- The culture of school has changed in our lifetime. Fellow students looked up to students who got good grades in the past, now, students who get good grades are shunned by fellow students, both male and female.
Dr. Sax then reviewed recent literature in the study of male and female brains of children, something that has only been done in the past 10 years. These findings show:
- Raising children in an androgynous fashion (Erector sets for the girls, dolls for the boys) does not make boys more nurturing and turn girls into engineers
- Young girls are not more verbal than young boys
- Young boys are not more spatial than young girls
- Differences among the sexes in young children are in the sensory area of the brain, not the cognitive area
- Girls see and are much more affected by bright colors
- Boys do not see colors as well
- Girls have a much greater sense of smell than boys
- Girls have much more acute hearing than boys. Boys do not hear ambient noise. Ambient noise can bother girls.
- Boys prefer the room temperature of 69 degrees
- Girls prefer 75 degrees
- Girls listen/learn better when then sit or lie down
- Boys listen/learn better when they stand and/or move around. When boys sit down, they “shut down”
- These sensory differences continue to be important factors from birth through adulthood
- Girls “become adults” mentally at age 22
- Boys “become adults” mentally at age 30
- Boys prefer books and stories about violence and adventure, but if exposed to these type of books, boys do not become more violent, and it does not mean that these boys have suffered abuse or been exposed to violence.
- Girls prefer books that are “warm/fuzzy/nurturing” and/or romantic.
- Girls who prefer violent books or stories tend to have suffered some abuse and may exhibit violent behavior.
Dr. Sax showed just a small part of a PBS video about young boys entitled “Raising Cain” to illustrate a few of his points. Dr. Sax has become a convert to the idea of single sex education because of recent research and the many male patients who have been referred to his practice by schools as possible candidates for drugs such as Ritalin. He believes strongly that both boys and girls do better academically and socially in single sex schools where the environment and teaching styles can accommodate the gender differences.
Dr. Sax reviewed the implications of these findings for early literacy story times at the library.
- In story times where there are both boys and girls, librarians should offer a variety of stories. Boys enjoy an active fantasy life of violence, but it will not “warp them as human beings and may in fact, cause them to act out less violently.”
- Boys need to be up and moving, participating in the story time and making noise.
- This “boy activity” can be annoying to both little girls and some lady librarians, so instead of offering a story time for boys and a story time for girls, perhaps offer a “Noisy Time Story Time” and “Quiet Time Story Time” and let patrons and librarians choose.
- Boys may not appear to be listening because they are up, moving around, and not looking at the storyteller, but they are listening and learning.
- Boys do not care about bright colors in illustrations
- Women librarians can engage boys in story times just as effectively as male librarians, but boys do not hear low, higher pitched voices well.
- These findings are not absolute – not all boys are “all boy” and not all girls are warm, fuzzy, nurturing, quiet, and want to sit still and listen.