Print Concepts

What are Print Concepts?

-an awareness of the print in our everyday environment

Concepts of Print

  • book concepts


    • front cover
    • back cover
    • title
  • reading concepts


    • print carries the message
  • directionality concepts


    • beginning of text
    • left to right
    • top to bottom
    • return sweep
    • one-to-one match
  • concept of letter and word


    • first word
    • last word
    • word
    • first letter in a word
    • last letter in a word
    • one letter/two letters
    • letter names
    • a capital letter
    • a small/lowercase letter
  • punctuation marks


    • period
    • question
    • question mark
    • exclamation
    • quotation
    • comma

Marie Clay calls concepts about print “the rules of the road,” and writes, “Teachers must teach so that all children become knowledgeable about these essential concepts so they open doors to literacy.” She explains that teachers who have an understanding of what aspects of print their students are attending to can introduce students early on to print conventions through experiences in both reading and writing—especially through focused instruction in the first six months of school (Clay, 2000, pp. 24-25).


Whole Group Lessons

Name activities and class book ideas

FUN activities for concepts of print

Shared Reading Finger Plays

-Use a pointer to model print concepts on an enlarged version of the finger play. Use daily across a week. Repetition builds oral language. 

-could write the rhyme as a part of Interactive Writing

Letter and Word Rubric

Shared Poetry Reading

-left to right directionality and one-to-one matching

Scaffolds for Teaching Emergent Readers 1 to 1 Correspondence

CCSS RFS.K.1.a, b and c

Tricks for Teaching Left to Right

Teaching Left to Write

Formative Assessment Recording Sheet for Unknown Print Concepts

Parent Handouts-Phonemic Awareness and Print Concepts

Letter or Word? Sort