About Partnership with Discovery Activities  

Family Literacy Activities​

Becoming literate is one of the most important journeys a child will ever take, and parents are often the most consistent guides and voices along the way. According to the International Reading Association, family literacy takes place during daily routines in life as parents, children, and family members use literacy at home and in their communities. Practicing family literacy skills and providing language, reading, and writing experiences from the earliest years of life all the way through high school is an important foundation for a child's lifelong success.

Parents can use the activities below with their children to help them acquire, maintain, and improve literacy skills. These activities are geared toward families with children in grades four and five, though, the activities can easily be used with younger and older children at any ability level.

Emergent Readers can read grade-level texts mostly independently but occasionally need support. They are approaching independence in comprehension but still need some supports, especially with advanced texts.

Proficient Readers can read texts independently, continually refining and developing their reading skills as they read more difficult materials. For the most part, they are capable of independently improving reading skills through increased practice, and able to draw conclusions and make evaluations.

Advanced Readers can read a wide range of texts independently, make complex inferences, explain and support their inferences, and apply their understanding of texts to make and support a judgment.

Activities will be structured around "skills-focused" topics. These skills align with the English Language Arts standards found in most states, as well as the Common Core State Standards (CCSS). Each activity will utilize one or more of the habits of good readers to assist students in practicing the identified skill.

  •  

    Many of the best stories are based on events that have taken place in the lives of authors. Our families have plenty of stories to tell that could be the basis of a great children's book. Creating a book about one of your family's adventures is a great way to creatively preserve memories and pass down these stories from generation to generation.

  •  

    A great way to teach your child responsibility and independence is to start a small business. Starting a business can also reinforce literacy skills for your child and help him or her make a little extra cash! Kids are not too young to start their own businesses. All it takes is a clear vision and the determination to see it happen. How can we spark the entrepreneurial spirit in our children?

  •  

    Does your family like going to the movies? What makes you choose the movies you see? Do you value the opinions of friends, other family members, or even movie reviewers? Watching a movie on television or in the theater can be a fun family activity! It can also help to support your child's literacy by sharing opinions about the movie, verbally or in writing. Reading and creating movie critiques can also be a great way to help your child explore the differences between facts and opinions.

  •  

    Does your family like music? If so, this activity is for you! Songs are not only fun to listen, sing and dance to; they also provide a great way to connect family members and shared experiences. Songs can help us celebrate our culture, remind us of special moments in our lives, help us express ourselves, or just provide a reason to dance! Song lyrics can be a lot like poetry, and reading and interpreting them can also be a great way to practice literacy skills.

  •  

    It's time to pack your bags! If you could go anywhere with your family, where would you choose? In this activity, you and your family will plan an imaginary trip and practice your literacy skills along the way.

  •  

    Acting out texts out is one way to really "get into" them. Sometimes we shy away because we don't think we can memorize lines. Reader's Theatre is a great way to exercise your acting potential without having to memorize a script. Reader's Theatre is a way of reading aloud by creating and performing scripts from parts or chapters of favorite books.

  •  

    Poetry is a great way to get children excited about language! Our children usually get their first taste of poetry in the form of lullabies, nursery rhymes, and songs. Poetry is also a wonderful way for children to learn how to share their experiences and feelings. We should encourage our children to pay attention to how specific words used in poems create images or pictures in their minds.

  •  

    The world is a great big place. The more we know about each other, the better chance we have of getting along. Exposing our children to different cultures is a great way to begin to break down barriers. We can expose our kids through readings and visits to various places such as museums. Help your child understand that often people are more alike than different, despite our various cultural backgrounds.

  •  

    What would you want future generations to know about your family? A time capsule is a great way to connect our current lives to future generations and practice reading and writing skills!

  •  

    Cooking as a family is a great way for children and adults to bond while doing something fun. It also provides a chance for everyone to try something new together. Following a recipe is also a way for children to learn how to follow step-by-step instructions. Giving children the opportunity to write a recipe can help them practice giving clear directions.