Younger Infant: Emergent Literacy

Nate McCallisterYounger Infant


Before we learn to love books, we hit them. At least, younger infants do.

This may be a sign, however, that the child is beginning to connect with print materials.

As younger infants move toward realms where literacy begins to emerge,  they increasingly show interest in verbal communication and printed words and images.

Below are some indicators or progress and quick tips we can use to support further progress.

Age: 0-8 Months
Language Development and Communication
Sub-domain: Emergent Literacy

Progress and Support

Younger infants show progress in this area when they do the following:

  • push picture buttons on toys to make them do different things,
  • tap their feet or hands when they hear music,
  • stare at or notice pictures of other children,
  • increase their interest in familiar words and rhymes.

Use these quick tips to support development:

  • point out pictures that you see on things and talk about them to the infant,
  • give the child plenty of access to durable books to explore,
  • show the little one pictures of familiar people and talk about them to the child,
  • tell stories,
  • do a finger play.

What other fun things can be done to help support the journey toward emerging literacy skills?

Resources: Minnesota’s Early Childhood Indicators of Progress, 2007