Thursday, October 7, 2010

Reading with Young Children

This is another compiled list of handouts I have accumulated about books and reading with your chidren.
Some of it is obvious, but it does have some good suggestions for improvement.
Reading with Young Children
The goal of reading to children is for them to gain a lifelong love of books.

Make reading out loud to children a daily ritual: 

  • Choose the same time and place, and make it a high priority.

  • Choose a quiet area that is free of distractions; with soft, comfortable, well-lit surroundings.

  • One of our major goals as parents is to teach our children how to communicate effectively. This includes reading, writing, speaking and listening. Reading aloud strenghens these communication skills.
Introduce the book:

  • Introduce the title, author, illustrator, and book cover.

  • Ask questions: What do they thnk the book will be about?
Look at the pictures:

  • What does the picture tell?

  • Have your younger children try and tell you what the story is about simply by looking at the pictures.
Use facial expressions and body movements:

  • Model your excitement for reading.

  • Rather than sitting your child on your lap facing the same direction, turn them around and hold the book under your chin. They still get to see the book, but they also get to see you (your expressions, how you pronounce words, etc.)
Change your voice for different characters:

  • The tone of your voice should express the characters' feelings.

  • Your coice should sound exciting and interesting
Talk about the story:

  • What do they think will happen?

  • Encourage them to ask questions.
Keep children involved and excited:

  • Some children may need to act out the story.

  • Use puppets with children who need to develop their listening skills.
Make sure the book is interesting to the children:

  • Can they relate to the characters?

  • Choose books with limited text and engaging pictures.
Read favorite books over and over again:

  • The repetition supports word recognition.
Why Read to your Child?

  • Strengthen communication skills: reading, writing, speaking.

  • To build a positive relationship with books and reading; giving your child a desire to read

  • To help children learn to read more easily and confidently when the time comes (without pushing)

  • To improve listening skills

  • To expand vocabulary

  • To teach more complex sentence structure

  • To improve memory

  • To provide a setting for warmth, attention, security, and sometimes a calming break in tensions

  • To expand a child's understanding of himself; arousing imagination, emotions and sympathies

  • To expand a child's understanding of his world; promoting discussion of both the commonplace and the extraordinary.

  • To strengthen reader's relationship with the child; helping understand each other through reactions to and discussion of boks.

  • For fun.
Books for Different Ages:

  •  Sturdy board books babies can chew on

  •  Books without words

  •  Books of babies

  •  Books about everyday objets (food, toys, animals, etc.)

  •  Books containing photos of familiar people

  •  Sturdy books that can be carried and dropped

  •  Books with few words

  •  Books of familiar activities (playing, eating, sleeping, etc.)

  •  Bedtime books

  •  Books about going places

  •  Books with simple rhymes and predicatble texts

  •  Books of familiar songs

  • Books with more words that tell stories (with lots of pitures but only a few sentences on the page)

  • Books about children with similar experiences (going to preschool, spending the night at a friend's house, going to the doctor, etc.)

  • Books about friends

  • Books about families

  • Books with predictable story lines and repeated phrases

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