Australia’s national education evidence body

Tried and Tested – Early literacy Download (PDF, 128KB)

A view from above of children in a early learning setting on the floor looking at a handwritten book with images.

Promote children's early language and communication skills 

Early Years Learning Framework | All outcomes

The Early Years Learning Framework (EYLF) defines literacy as ‛the capacity, confidence and disposition to use language in all its forms’. It can include talking, listening, viewing, reading, writing, music, movement, dance, storytelling, visual arts, media and drama. Children develop a wide range of literacy skills in the early years, from infancy through to the start of school, which form the foundation for reading, writing and communicating. Early literacy approaches aim to promote the development of these foundational skills.

Early childhood educators and teachers play an essential role in providing opportunities for children to learn early literacy concepts. The EYLF encourages early childhood educators and teachers to support positive attitudes in relation to language and literacy, as well as knowledge and skills. As all the EYLF outcomes are interconnected, early literacy also helps children to develop a strong sense of identity, wellbeing, and be connected and contribute to their world. When children use language (verbal and non-verbal), they can express who they are, create connections with others and start to influence the world around them. Fostering early literacy is therefore an important part of developing the whole child, and improving wellbeing and belonging.

Evidence-based practices for promoting early literacy in early childhood care and education settings are listed below. Some of the examples offered may not apply in all contexts and/or may be more suitable for particular learners or age groups.

Key practices

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