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Insight Into FranceABC: What is Learning to Read?

Updated: Jul 27, 2021

Teaching a child to read is perhaps the most important skill you can give them. As we all know, reading opens doors and worlds, both real and imagined. Reading and writing are key communication methods for learning another language, for communicating with native speakers in that language, and embracing the cultures of that language. In order to teach reading and writing in French, FranceABC uses a technique called learning to read, reading to learn. But what is learning to read?

What is Learning to Read, Reading to Learn?

This is a common learning technique that educators use and it's a relatively basic concept. Educators, or parents, teach children the foundations of language and reading before moving on to understand complex concepts and gain information through reading. In reading, children must connect the sounds of language with its visual symbols - letters. They understand the sounds each letter makes, especially when combined with other letters, and how those join to make words. In the process, they learn what those words stand for, sometimes using photos and flashcards.

This process helps children gain phonemic awareness which is, 'an understanding that words and syllables are comprised of a sequence of elementary speech sounds. This understanding is essential to learning to read an alphabetic language' (Reading Rocket). Once children begin to grasp this concept, they can start to combine words to make sentences with simple meanings. They continue to build up their ability to parse sentences until they are reading paragraphs and books.