Language and Literacy

Somerville uses a Balanced Literacy approach.  This means that we use complementary approaches to language and literacy, balancing attention on all elements of literacy exposure and instruction in speaking, listening, writing, and reading. For PreK this means a focus on:

  • Oral Language and Vocabulary

  • Book Knowledge

  • Print Concepts

  • Writing

  • Physical Development and Writing Mechanics

  • Phonological & Phonemic Awareness: Listening for and playing with sounds, words, and syllables

  • Phonics: Linking sounds and pictures, sounding out words


“Balance” also refers to the way teachers engage in multiple resources and activities tailored to children's diverse learning needs throughout the day.  There is also a balance of instructional configurations: whole group, small group, individual, and the “handover” - where children independently engage in activities alone, in pairs, or small groups without the need of constant adult intervention.  This last part relies on really good Guided Discovery presentations.  Please visit the Guided Discovery section of the website to learn more about presentations that foster independence.