Celebrate Literacy Week – Early Literacy

Celebrate Literacy Week: January 28 – February 1, 2019

The Just Read, Florida! Office and the Florida Department of Education (FDOE), in partnership with other FDOE offices, the Office of Early Learning
(OEL), school districts, early learning coalitions and numerous other state agencies, are pleased to announce the 11th annual statewide Celebrate
Literacy Week, Florida! (CLW). The event will take place the week of January 28 – February 1, 2019.

The 2019 CLW theme is Spreading Literacy, One View at a Time, which OEL has chosen to expand into a garden-focused theme as we Spread Literacy, One Book at Time. With this theme in mind, we are encouraging all schools to help spread the love of reading and the importance of literacy
by participating in a garden-themed approach. As educators, we are spreading seeds, growing readers and harvesting the love of reading every
day with the young children we serve.

Please join us in this year’s simultaneous reading activity on Wednesday, January 30, at 9 a.m. (EST). Providers will spread the love of literacy in their homes, centers and schools by reading Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, by Bill Martin Jr. and John Archambault to infants and toddlers (birth to 3-year-olds), and Planting a Rainbow, by Lois Ehlert to preschoolers (3 to 5-year-olds). We have included in this notice several supporting resources (suggested books, expansion activities and targeted standards) which you may find useful as you plan for this year’s CLW activities.

The foundation for reading begins at infancy, as a child’s early experiences with books and language lay the groundwork for future success in learning to read. When you read, talk or play with children, their brains are stimulated and build the connections that become the building blocks for reading. Brain development research shows that the development of language and literacy skills begins at birth and reading aloud to children every day increases their brains’ capacity for language and literacy skills.

Reading a book to young children is not only one of the best activities to stimulate language and cognitive skills, but it also builds motivation for reading along with curiosity and memory. The more words parents use when speaking to an infant, the greater the size of their infant’s vocabulary.

Expansion Activities for Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Infant/Toddler (Birth to 3-year-olds). Following the simultaneous reading, teachers may want to provide one of the following activities for the children in their class.

• Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Sing-Along – Play the Chicka Chicka Boom Boom song located at the link below and provide children with musical instruments to play while singing and dancing to this fun and happy song.


(Standards: Creative Expression Through the Arts/Sensory Art Experience – Discover and engages in creative music experiences; Physical Development/Fine Motor Development – Gains control of hands and fingers)

• Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Tree – After reading the story, talk about the parts of the Chicka Chicka Boom Boom tree (tunk, leaves, coconuts). Provide children with finger paint paper and green (leaves) and brown (trunk) finger paint. Allow children to explore the paint and create their very own Chicka Chicka Boom Boom tree.

(Standards: Creative Expression Through the Arts/Sensory Art Experience – combine a variety of open-ended, process-oriented and diverse art materials to explore techniques with intention; Physical Development/Fine Motor Development – Uses handeye coordination with participating in routines, play and activities)


• Chicka Chicka Boom Boom Snack – Create an edible snack using a banana/trunk, kiwi slices/leaves, raisins/coconuts and alphabet cereal. Allow children to construct their tree and place letters on the plate as you read the story Chicka Chicka Boom Boom or sing an alphabet song. Talk with children about the tree parts (trunk, leaves, fruit) and the letters they have on their plate. Provide time for the children to enjoy eating the snack.

(Standards: Scientific Inquiry/Life Science – Explores the needs of living things; Phy sical Development/Fine Motor- coordinates the use of hands and fingers)

• Climb the Coconut Tree – After reading the story, talk about the directional words, sharing how the letters went up the tree and fell down. Make a coconut tree on a bulletin board (at child’s level) or poster board and give each child a plastic, felt or magnetic letter. Ask each child to make their letter go up the tree, down the tree, to the top of the tree and to the bottom of the tree. Give each child a cut-out first letter of their name and let them use different colors of finger-paint to paint the letter. When the letters are dry, help the children glue the letters to the trunk of the coconut tree.

(Standards: Mathematical Thinking/Spatial Relations – begins to use body to demonstrate an understanding of basic spatial directions; Language and Literacy/Vocabulary – Uses increased vocabulary to describe objects, actions and events)

• Coconut Senses – Sit on the rug or at a table with the children in a circle and place a coconut in the middle (or have a coconut for each child).Tell the children to use their hands and eyes to look at and feel the coconut. Ask them: Is the coconut rough, smooth or bumpy, hard or soft, flat or round? Ask them to shake the coconut and listen for any sounds. Ask them, “Do you hear any sounds? What do you think is making that sound?” Cut a coconut open and show them the coconut milk inside the coconut. Give each child some coconut milk and some coconut meat or flakes for them to taste. Ask how it tastes and if they like the taste of the milk or the meat/flakes.

(Standards: Language and Literacy/Vocabulary – Uses increased vocabulary to describe objects, actions and events; Scientific Inquiry/Exploration and Discovery – uses senses to explore and understand their social and physical environment)

Expansion Activities for Planting a Rainbow Preschool (3 to 5-year-olds)
Following the simultaneous reading, teachers may want to provide one of the following activities for the children in their class. Planting a Rainbow read aloud https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sti3PXBeVag

• Children Rainbow – Read the story Planting a Rainbow. Ask children to identify the color of their shirt or dress. Direct all the children wearing one specific color to stand and line up next to each other. Share that these children are the first color in the children rainbow. Follow this process with additional colors until all the children are in the line, grouped by color and part of the children rainbow. Take a picture of the children rainbow and then share with the children to show the children rainbow they created. You may also do this with various colors of construction paper and ask the
children to line up holding the color paper they are holding.

(Standards: Mathematical Thinking/Measurement and Data – participates in group sorting and data collection; Language
and Literacy/Conversation – Uses verbal and nonverbal communication and language to express needs and feelings, share
experiences and resolve problems)

• Celery Rainbow – Prepare five to six stalks of celery (with leaves still attached) by trimming the base of the celery and placing one stalk each in individual jars. Fill each jar ¾ full with water. Add eight to ten drops of one shade of food coloring in each jar (red in one jar, blue in another jar). Ask the children to predict what they think will happen to the celery and talk with them about their predictions. Create a class chart with comments and possible illustrations. Ask them: “What do you think is going to happen to the celery?” “Why?” “How?”

Return to the celery after several hours to note any changes. Discuss further. Ask them: “What do you see that happened?” “ How do you think it happened?” “What can we assume?” “What does this tell us about plants?”

(Standards: Scientific Inquiry/ Life Science – Demonstrates knowledge related to living things and their environment; Language
and Literacy/Vocabulary – describes what objects are used for and is able to express ideas (e.g., names some colors,
shapes and says full name)

• Letter Garden – Plant a class letter garden using some or all of the following plants or seeds:
A – avocado
B – beans
C – carrot seeds
D – daisy
E – egg plant
F – flower
G – garlic
H – huckleberry
I – iceburg lettuce
J – jasmine
K – kale
L – lima beans
M – melons
N – create a noise maker to keep the birds away
O – okra
P – pineapple Q – use a quilt in the winter to keep plants warm during cold nights
R – radish
S – squash
T – tomatoes
U – an umbrella for the shade plants
V – violets
W – watermelon
X – use your x-ray vision to make sure plants are well cared for (binoculars, magnifying glasses)
Y – yukon potatoes
Z – zinnias

• Allow children to plant, grow and harvest any fruit or flowers. During this project, teachers can share the many and various needs of plants, types of plants, why some survived better than others and the climate. This garden can vary in size from a terrarium or window box to a large plot of soil on school property depending on the needs and resources available.

(Standards: Physical Development/Fine Motor- coordinates the use of hands and fingers; Scientific Inquiry/Exploration and Discovery – demonstrates the use of simple tools and equipment for observing and investigating)

• Rainbow Graph – Provide children with a small cup with approximately 20 color candies or cereal pieces (e.g., M&Ms, Skittles, Fruit Loops) and one sheet of plain paper. Ask the children to sort candies or cereal into groups based on their color. Teacher may say, “I would like you to pick out all the green pieces and put them in a row on your paper.” Children would pick out the green candies or cereal pieces and place them in a row. Teacher will continue the process until the children have sorted all the colors on their paper. Talk with the children about the different colors of candy or cereal and compare them to the colors in Planting a Rainbow book.

Ask the children to count all of the yellow pieces and then direct them to eat one piece from the yellow row. Ask the children to recount their pieces and share how many yellow pieces they now have. Here are some suggested comments or questions:  “Let’s count the yellow ones. How many do you have?”

“Eat one of the yellow pieces. Now how many do you have?” “Doy ou have more or less?” “Is 4 more than 3?” etc.

(Standards: Language and Literacy/Vocabulary – describes what objects are used for and is able to express ideas (e.g., names some colors, shapes and says full name; Mathematical Thinking/Measurement and Data – Participates in sorting and data collection)

2019 Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida! January 28 – February 1, 2019 Supporting Book List:
• Growing Vegetable Soup, by Lois Ehlert
• The Magnificent Sunflower, by Lee Haydn Straight
• The Tiny Seed, by Eric Carle
• The Carrot Seed, By Ruth Krauss
• Isabella’s Garden, by Glenda Millard
• Ten Read Apples, by Pat Hutchins
• If You Plant a Seed, by Kadir Nelson
• Flower Garden, by Eve Bunting