Children learn about communication, language, storytelling, and letters long before they actually learn to read and write, and this is where early literacy comes in. Research on early literacy and child development indicates that it is never too early to start preparing children for reading success.
Children who have been read to from an early age have a larger vocabulary, acquire better language skills, and are more likely to want to learn to read than children who have not been read to. In addition, research has shown that children need to develop certain skills in order to fully benefit from the reading instruction they receive when they arrive at school. Library staff play a key role in helping young patrons develop those skills and in educating parents and other caregivers about their crucial role as their children’s first teachers.