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Research with pre-schoolers: Hearing the sounds influences literacy

Speech perception – the ability to hear the sounds – influences future literacy outcomes in pre-schoolers. That is to say, the ability to recognize, manipulate, and decode phonemes – phonemic awareness (PA) – is critical for reading.


The title of this post and the above quote come from an article I recently read (below). This is not new info. It has been shown time and time again.


Most of the research has been done with L1 children who have problems decoding phonemes. These problems might be severe, as in the case of autism, or it might be minor. Whatever the cause, phonemic awareness is the largest predictor of reading ability with alphabetic scripts. This is well known.


The article I read provides empirical evidence for the associations between speech sound processing and reading development with Chinese pre-schoolers. Researchers found that speech perception in kindergarten could predict literacy outcomes. Their conclusions agree with what has long been known, that the ability to hear the sounds plays an important role in reading development.


For example, children need to be able to distinguish the sounds for phonics to be effective. In L2 settings, teaching the sounds of the language is critical.


This is what b4does.


Article mentioned:

Cortical Responses to Chinese Phonemes in Preschoolers Predict Their Literacy Skills at School Age    Hong, Shuai, Frost, Landi, Pugh & Shu


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