In this video segment from Between the Lions, the song "Look It Up" illustrates how words and images can provide important information. It combines an upbeat tune with kid-friendly images to motivate children to use reference materials. "Here’s the deal: If you want to get real, look it up!"
One of the strongest predictors of children's success in learning to read is early exposure to a variety of print and its uses. Good readers are fortunate to have access to a world of information. They frequently consult books, newspapers, magazines, computers, and maps when they have questions or ideas they want to pursue. Young children naturally become part of the culture of literacy when adults in their homes and classrooms help them use books and other print resources to build background knowledge.
The song "Look It Up" celebrates an important function of print—specifically, how text can provide information about the world. Children want to know more about their favorite topics, and parents and teachers can feed this curiosity and boost children's motivation by showing them how exciting it is to track down useful information in print.
"Look It Up" mentions several interesting topics, from mosquitoes and whales to earthquakes and planets. Informational texts can be difficult for beginning readers, and children are more motivated to read when they are interested in the topic, so the best subjects to explore in print are ones children find compelling. Struggling readers, in particular, are more likely to give reading the time and practice required if the topic interests them. Teachers can identify children's interests by listening for their questions, respecting their hobbies, and finding age-appropriate resources to explore.
Young children need to have easy access to print materials in their homes, preschool classrooms, libraries, and beyond. A classroom that fosters early literacy should have lots of books with intriguing pictures and limited text, as well as posters with large print and engaging pictures at children's eye level. Classroom libraries should include many easy-to-read books: familiar storybooks, children's magazines, alphabet books, and informational books with real-life photos and simple text. For older students, books should represent different reading levels and a variety of genres.
Academic standards correlations on Teachers' Domain use the Achievement Standards Network (ASN) database of state and national standards, provided to NSDL projects courtesy of JES & Co.
We assign reference terms to each statement within a standards document and to each media resource, and correlations are based upon matches of these terms for a given grade band. If a particular standards document of interest to you is not displayed yet, it most likely has not yet been processed by ASN or by Teachers' Domain. We will be adding social studies and arts correlations over the coming year, and also will be increasing the specificity of alignment.