Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Recognizable Print

    I have got a question for parents. What dose the McDonald's double arches, the leprechaun from Lucky Charms, a Wii controller, and a stop light have in common? They were not only recognized by the students, but they were also elaborated upon. This afternoon in class I sat with my students in small groups, held up pictures of these items, and asked what they were. What I got were great descriptions ranging from "That M stands for hamburgers and Ronald McDonald" to "That guy that has cereal with a bunch of marshmallows in it and if you catch him you get a lot of that stuff" to more.
    Some of you might be wondering not only why I did this activity, but also why I was so glad to hear their responses. The reason is that by explaining what these things are I can see that the students are forming connections and gaining recognition with these symbols. These two tools are an instrumental part of literacy. I want them to form connections and recognize what they need. Seeing symbols or environmental print like these prepare them for using these tools with literature.
    In four days we will have an Environmental Print Day where we set up stations that will be used for recognition and explanation. What I would like the parents to do (I will be sending reminders home as well) is to:

  1. have you and your child practice pointing out these symbols throughout the day (I sent home a sheet with a description and examples of environmental print)
  2. bring in two examples of environmental print (one food related only) and
  3. have the child pick out his or her favorite environmental print design.
As always please feel free to contact me whenever you want.


  1. Setting up environmental print stations will be so interesting; I'm sure the responses will be telling of how the child relates to the things around him and how they are making meaning of what they have. I'm sure that after this day, you will be fully equipped with tons of information to plan relavent and useful activities to follow up!

  2. I LOVE that you began your post by posing a question!! AND you ended with a simplistic bullet point format! This is truly a perfect example of a fantastic (teacher's) post! Also, it is simple yet very effective. Reconnecting back to previous posts, too, is a great thing for everyone to keep in mind. It gives it a nice a flow

  3. Wow i really liked how you made an activity out of this! I think that it would be a great idea to incorporate the parents in this activity. It will not only answer your questions but give you an opportunity to collaberate with your parents.

  4. This was such a realistic sounding post and you do a great job taking on a teacher voice. Your ideas are so good in developing the family and classroom connection. Informing the parents about what is going on and wanting them to participate, even asking them to participate, is beneficial to the children's literacy development.