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Literacy development is an integral part of human development. Literacy development in children begins with their ability to learn how to write and read. Developing positive language skills at an early age is instrumental in increasing his or her opportunities in the world. Literacy learning begins at an early stage of human development, as early as the first three years of childhood. During this period, the ability to speak, learn and think develops. Literacy can be described as the ability to communicate and connect with the rest of the world. One of the key factors that determine literacy in childhood at earlier stages of development is the level of vocabulary.
Children who acquire substantial oral vocabulary find it easier to learn than those who do not. The relationship between learning and vocabulary implies that children who have acquired vocabulary can easily read and comprehend written language (Morrow & Gambrell, 2011). This means that they are easily enabled and accorded further opportunities by their ability to read words and learn their meaning. This means that they can continuously improve their skill through more reading and understanding, a skill that is aided by a child’s substantial oral vocabulary.
Children with substantial oral vocabulary easily recognize words, and this enriches their ability to learn. Having a large vocabulary or the ability to know more words enable children to learn how to read and write. Studies have indicated that there is a positive relationship between vocabulary knowledge and easier learning (Dickson & Neuman, 2003). Knowledge can be easily acquired when a child can recognize words and have the ability to learn to read and write. Phonological awareness is enhanced by learning and knowing more words. Phonological awareness can be directly linked to literacy outcomes. Just as vocabulary level can be easily linked to the ability to learn to read and write (Morrow & Gambrell, 2011).
Using literature for educating children provides teachers with an indispensable tool that can enable enhancement of childhood vocabulary. Exposing children to literature enables children to develop more vocabulary and learn language structure with sophistication. Children increase their vocabularies as they read more literature; this is essential in developing and improvin their reading skills. Exposing children to literature enables to develop a lot of background knowledge through exposure to different experiences provided in literature (Connor, et al., 2009). This background knowledge is essential in aiding children to learn about content and relate it in the context with their reading experience. This helps children to differentiate spoken and written language.
Literature enables children to acquire reading interests early in their lives, what enables children to enjoy reading for pleasure and learning purposes. Literature has been recognized as an indispensable tool that provides daily reading opportunities to children. Literature also provides children with opportunities to develop interpretive skills critical analysis skills by integrating themes into literature (Dickson & Neuman, 2003). Reading also enables children to develop their oral and written skills by exposing children to writing skills and the written word. Literature also helps in developing oral skills through its ability to provide children with a large source of vocabulary. In addition, literature provides children with opportunities that include children reading out loudly the literature books availed to them.
According to Connor, et al., (2009) literature gives children ideal opportunities to develop critical reading skills. They argue that exposing children to literature enables them to acquire background knowledge that is essential in enabling children to learn how to construct meanings from written and spoken words. This enables children to improve their communication skills and opens avenues to develop their full potential. Scholars have over the years recognized the existence of a strong relationship that links speaking, thinking and listening to the ability to read and write. This implies that writing and reading is an essential component of literacy development.
Human development involves a number of critical processes, among them literacy development. Literacy development in children begins with their ability to learn how to write and read. Developing literacy skills at an early age is instrumental in increasing opportunities in the world for any given individual. Learning and literacy have been found to form concrete foundations to children from an early age for their development (Dickson & Neuman, 2003). During the earlier stages of childhood, the ability to speak, learn, think and reason begins to develop. Literacy can, therefore, be described as the process that begins to develop from earlier stages of childhood.
One of the crucial factors that determine literacy in childhood at earlier stages of development is the level of vocabulary. Children who acquire substantial oral vocabulary find it easier to learn. The relationship between learning and vocabulary implies that increasing the level of vocabulary enhances his or her learning abilities. Literature can be used as an essential tool that can provide with the capabilities to enhance their vocabularies, develop more vocabulary and learning to read and write. This is a crucial ingredient in the human development process. Children increase their vocabularies by reading more literature, what helps improve their reading and writing skills. Therefore, regular exposure of children to literature is essential in enabling children to develop into productive adults and fully exploit their potential.
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