Reading

Successful reading involves the interaction of two separate skills. These include work recognition (sight word knowledge and decoding unfamiliar words) and language comprehension (understanding he meaning of each word).

According to a study by Tan and Nicholson (1997), the development of fluent word recognition skills can make an important difference in students’ understanding of what they read. Students are provided with the best opportunities for success when teachers integrate phonemic awareness, phonics, reading fluency, vocabulary knowledge and comprehension. (Dept. of Education Science and Training – Australian Government, 2005).

Reading is a vital skills which becomes more important as a child progresses through their school years, Initially the focus at school is around learning to read i.e. wight word knowledge and decoding unfamiliar words. From around Year 2 the focus moves toward reading to learn i.e. students are expected to use their reading skills to learn new information.

Writing

Writing is a written form of language. In order for a child to be successful at writing they require several skills including an understanding of different text type, sound sentence structure, a broad vocabulary and correct use of punctuation.

According to Means (2006), children who are poor writers tend to focus their attention on the mechanics of writing (letter formation, spelling, appearance) rather than the content of their writing.

Difficulty with written expression has a significant impact on a child’s academic and social development. In the early years there is a strong focus on writing which gradually develops into the school years. Where as initially children are focusing on the process of writing itself, later on children are expected to use their written skills to express their ideas as well as using the written form to participate in the majority of academic tasks. Not only is writing important in the school environment today but also socially as children use written language in text messages and social media to communicate with their peers. JBB Not only is writing important in the school environment, it is also plays a significant role social as children use written language in text messages and social media to communicate with their peers.