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With the language arts programs that I use for my kids, there is a strong emphasis on dictation skills. Although dictation is rarely used in an office setting as it used to be before technology took care of all of that, it is something that is extremely beneficial in building brain skills. You can read more about the programs we use for language arts over here in this post. For help in choosing your own curriculum, I talk about some steps to follow here.
We were just reading about dictation skills from a short and long-term memory standpoint in 7th grade science today. The challenge was to tell my kids a phone number and then have them recall it immediately after and then again another 10 minutes or so later. I am amazed at how well my daughter does with this sort of thing while my son struggles more. However, when we practice dictation he struggles his way through whereas my daughter has an easier time with it.
It is my belief that you can never start building on these skills too early, and the preschool years are a great time to start.
With that in mind, the options are nearly limitless in doing this.
You probably already teach your kids the alphabet and counting, maybe a short prayer, and songs, but you could also teach them things like:
- their phone number and address
- the words to a simple poem
- the names of extended family members as they are in their families
- the days of the week
- the months of the year
- simple Bible verses
One way to make this activity a bit more fun is to vary your tone, the pitch of your voice, and speaking the words at varying paces. Ever wonder why songs are easier for kids to learn? It is because of the combination of the words they are memorizing with the varying melody in the song itself.
Strong dictation skills are an awesome addition to any preschool learning plan, and it isn’t hard to come up with things that will interest your preschooler. Teaching them things like their phone number and address (along with how to use it) is killing two birds with one stone as your child is not only safer but building up their brain muscles as well. Try these ideas today!