Language for Reading

Hande Ilgaz, Brenna Hassinger-Das, Kathy Hirsh-Pasek & Roberta Michnick Golinkoff

In: Encyclopedia of Language Development

Language for Reading

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  • Strong early language skills support not only later language development, but also emergent literacy and later reading readiness in kindergarten. The data here are abundant and clear. Unfortunately, children from disadvantaged backgrounds often lag behind middle-class students when it comes to language growth, and thus start school at a major disadvantage relative to their higher-income peers. By third grade, many of these children have such poor literacy skills that their chances of receiving a high school diploma are negligable. By building up the language capabilities of these children when they are in preschool and early elementary school, educators can change the course of that trajectory. This entry describes how we can use current scientific data to best support strong language competencies for all children. First, ...

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