The ability to communicate plays an important role both in intellectual development and in the growth of personality. Children at each grade level have their characteristic needs for growth as well as their characteristic methods of reaction and response. As teachers learn to fit the language arts program to these needs and to these ways of responding, as they set realistic goals, and as they work through rather than against children's normal patterns of development, satisfactory growth in language will result. For the language arts program is both an end and means. It develops skills in all forms of communication through language, giving children increasing insight into the structure and effective use of their mother tongue and developing their ability to read and listen as well as to use reading and listening for worth-wile purposes in life. At the same time, language is the means by which children aquire knowledge and understanding in all areas of education and in first-hand experience in life.
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Reading is an important element of the literacy process for an elementary student. Reading can open the door to various new experiences and thoroughly expand a students horizon for learning. Books are important to help children understand the development of them selves as well as others. Children love to probe motives and discover answers to their own problems through reading. Reading is the interpretation of written language. Children learn their first words by simply being told what they are. The process by which he or she keeps in mind the visual image, the pronunciation, and the meaning is not all together clear, but he uses such sight words exclusively in the early stages of reading. Elementary children learn at the Elementary level through a combination of matching and differentiating visual images and by memorizing the position of certain words. Configuration, or shape and length of words are natural cues for most beginners. Children are usually unconscious to the fact that they are leaning these skills, until they become thrilled about the fact that they can read by themselves. Children also develop reading skills by connecting words with pictures and associating the two.
Writing is committing a person's thoughts or ideas to paper. Once the writing is encoded then the reading can be decoded. Listening to the teacher read stories and poetry about their own experience or related to it helps children to sense the power of words and the ways in which they are fitted into sentences. The two elements go hand in hand together. Children can grow and develop into mature writers through motivation that stems from their own interest. Direct teaching and conscious learning are needed to meet the various needs involved in the development of writing. Children first learn to write their names in order to identify their work. The process develops slowly in the first year and then rapidly increases in the second year of school. By the end of third grade an Elementary student is usually writing with a great deal of skill and independence. As the child gains in ability, he or she is encouraged to write independently, turning to the teacher for any help needed with placement on paper, handwriting, or spelling of words. As the student develops independence in writing and spelling, the child also grows in interest in using writing for various personal and practical purposes and in satisfaction in the power he is achieving.
Speaking is the one activity that most Elementary children can all participate in no matter the age or grade level. Speaking can be defined as communicating vocally. Under favorable circumstances the normal child speaks freely and fearlessly when he or she enters school. The student uses words to express his wishes and his or her feelings, and may even employ phrases such as, thank you, please, and excuse me. From the first day of school, the child continues to add to his or her abilites in speaking. As the student has new experiences, he or she aquires new words with wich to talk about. As the student adds to his vocabulary, he or she learns new ways to put words together to convey what he or she thinks. Every new experience gives him more words or clearer understanding of ones already known; every new interest makes the student eager to find better ways to vocally express there selves. The students successful contacts with reading and writing, although they depend in part on his ability in oral language, will also serve that ability. As the student progresses in school he or she will become more adapt at articulation.
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Listening can be defined as giving attention with the ear. The development of children in listening is continuously interrelated with their growth in speaking, and after the early years of childhood, with their reading and writing as well. Listening is a forerunner of speaking and continues to bear a reciprocal relationship to it. For every speaker, there must be a listener; the listener, in turn, becomes a better speaker for having listened well to the speech of others. Elementary aged children have the ability to assume responsibility to the speaker, asking questions about what they do not understand, listening and carrying out simple directions, and following sequences of events in simple stories. As children set goals for themselves in intelligent listening, their progress will be accelerated. Listening is an important language arts element regarding the fact that children use it to conversate, discuss, story reading, poetry, assemblies, and many many activities in Elementary school.
Viewing could be defined as seeing, watching, or visually inspecting visual items. These could include: pictures, books, maps, videos, and various others. Theatrical experiences could also be viewed, as well as classroom lectures. Children today are bombarded with images and visual media of all types to persuade them to believe certain things, or feel a certain way. Viewing is an important element in the Language Arts for Elementary students because it is there way to development academic skills, as well as social skills. Children are viewing every day in our schools diagrams, dvd's and many other visual aids for learning development. Viewing development entails giving attentionto facts, relationships, inferences, and to critical analysis.
Visually representing refers to communicating through visual images. These images include photographs, drawings, graphs, maps, and diagrams, as well as video presentations, dioramas, models, and dramatizations. This form of communication requires the student to collect and organize information, decide on the best way to convey it to others, and produce a visual product to accomplish this communication, often incorporating print and sound with the visual images, if the student is trying to convey information or sway opinion. It requires organizing and representing an event or sequence of events for the pleasure or diversion of an audience, if the purpose of the representation is to entertain.