How Childhood Literacy Boosts Academic Achievement

Many children face academic challenges, and a significant contributing factor is the struggle with literacy. Without a strong foundation in reading and writing, students may find it difficult to excel academically.

However, there's a solution that can pave the way for better academic outcomes – childhood literacy. By instilling solid literacy skills in children from an early age, we can address and overcome the challenges they might face in their academic journey.

This article will explore the connection between early literacy development and success in school, shedding light on practical solutions to prioritise literacy from an early age.

Importance of Early Literacy Development

Understanding basic literacy skills is a fundamental step in a child's educational journey. Introducing children to letters, their shapes, and the sounds they make is a key aspect of early literacy. 

Through interactive activities and games, children can start recognising letters, linking them with sounds, and eventually forming connections to words. This early exposure sets the stage for more advanced reading and writing skills as they progress in their education.

Similarly, early exposure to language and books expands their vocabulary, enhances comprehension skills, and fosters a love for learning. 


Children who are immersed in a rich literary environment from an early age are more likely to develop a lifelong passion for reading and perform well academically in the long run.

Impact of Childhood Literacy on Academic Performance

Let’s look at the positive impact childhood literacy has on academic performance:

  • Improved performance in various subjects

Childhood literacy plays a vital role in helping students do better in different subjects at school. When children are good at reading and writing, they can understand information from textbooks more easily. 

This isn't just limited to language subjects – it helps them grasp tricky concepts in math, science, and social studies too. Being able to understand what they're learning directly links to doing well in their schoolwork. 

Moreover, learning to read and write well expands a child's vocabulary. Having more words to use helps them express their thoughts clearly, which is handy in all subjects. 

  • Enhanced comprehension and critical thinking

When children become proficient readers, they naturally improve their comprehension skills. They can understand and interpret information more effectively, whether it's from textbooks, instructional materials, or everyday situations. 

Moreover, literacy development contributes to the cultivation of critical thinking abilities. As children engage with diverse texts and stories, they learn to analyse and evaluate information thoughtfully. 

They develop the skills to question, infer, and draw connections between different concepts. This kind of critical thinking becomes a transferable skill applicable to various subjects.

  • Ability to follow instructions

As children develop strong literacy skills, they can navigate step-by-step directions, understand assignment requirements, and execute tasks accurately. 

Additionally, literacy development enhances overall language proficiency, enabling children to comprehend both written and verbal instructions effectively. 

This linguistic foundation proves instrumental in various subjects where a clear understanding and execution of instructions are essential. Moreover, the process of literacy cultivation instils attention to detail in children. 

  • Increased confidence and learning engagement 

Proficient literacy skills contribute to increased self-assurance in a child's academic abilities. As they become adept readers and writers, the confidence gained in their literacy proficiency spills over into other subjects, encouraging an overall positive attitude towards learning.

The ability to read and comprehend effectively allows children to participate in class discussions actively, express their thoughts coherently, and engage more deeply with the learning process.

  • Versatile career opportunities

Beyond academia, childhood literacy opens doors to a host of career opportunities. Effective communication, critical thinking, and problem-solving skills developed through literacy are universally valued in the professional world. 

Proficient readers are better positioned to adapt to diverse career paths, paving the way for a successful and fulfilling professional journey.

4 Practical Tips for Promoting Childhood Literacy

Here are four practical ways to boost childhood literacy and set a strong foundation in reading and language skills.

Explore reading programmes

Consider enrolling your child in reading programs designed to make learning enjoyable and effective. 

These programs not only expose children to diverse stories but also create a social and supportive environment that fosters a love for reading. By actively participating in such programs, your child can develop both the skills and enthusiasm necessary for a strong foundation in literacy.

For instance, we at I Can Read have a reading programme

Focused on stories, comprehension, and language acquisition, this 12-month course, spanning Reading Levels 1 to 6, transforms students into confident and independent readers. Each class within the program is a dynamic blend of:

  • Engaging stories crafted for children, make the reading experience enjoyable
  • Screener tools to facilitate the visual blending and reading process, enhancing comprehension
  • Practical application of diacritical marks from the I Can Read code card, aiding in sound identification
  • Regular spelling tests to reinforce essential vocabulary and enhance overall language proficiency

Reading activities

Reading together is a simple yet powerful way to boost childhood literacy. Choose age-appropriate books with colourful pictures and engaging stories. 

[Article] How Childhood Literacy Boosts Academic Achievement 3

Make it a routine to read with your child – whether it's before bedtime or during the day. The key is to create a cosy, shared experience around reading books. Ask questions about the story, let them ask questions too, and make it interactive. 

This not only enhances their understanding but also fosters a positive association with reading.

Interactive games and activities

Word games, such as word associations or rhyming games, are effective in expanding vocabulary. 

Engage in storytelling activities where you and your child take turns building a narrative. This not only sparks creativity but also strengthens language skills. Make literacy a part of daily life by incorporating words into routines – during cooking, shopping, or even while playing. 

Interactive activities not only make learning enjoyable but also reinforce the connection between language and everyday experiences.

Encourage writing and creative expression

Provide writing materials like pencils, crayons, and paper, and let them explore their creativity freely. Encourage journaling, where they can jot down thoughts, stories, or drawings. 

Celebrate their efforts and display their creations proudly. This not only enhances writing skills but also boosts confidence in expressing ideas. Additionally, prompt creative writing by suggesting imaginative stories or allowing them to invent their own. 

By making writing a positive and expressive experience, you cultivate a strong foundation for effective communication and a love for self-expression through words.


The impact of childhood literacy goes beyond just reading and writing. It lays the foundation for academic success.

Parents and caregivers contribute to a child's ability to comprehend, think critically, and communicate effectively by instilling a love for reading and encouraging writing expression. 

A strong foundation in literacy not only helps in current grades but becomes a stepping stone for success in higher levels of education. It ensures that every child has the tools they need to excel academically and pursue a bright educational journey.