Make Books Exciting
* stimulates imagination and creativity
* develops language and vocabulary
* builds interest in different topics and concepts
* helps children to learn more about their world
Activities to Prepare Children to Read
* visit the library and/or bookstore weekly
* make reading part of everyday
* let children choose books based on their interests (include rhyming books, song books and concept books).
* read with expression and let children talk about books
* Toddlers: choose board books and hard cover books with large, bright illustrations and few words per page. Rhyming books and simple writing are great for this age.
* Preschool: choose books with more detailed illustrations, sentences and more complex story lines.
* This is the age where it’s super important to choose high interest topics.
* increases excitement to read
* fosters love of learning and reading
* increases attention span for listening
Reading to Engage Children
* Read title and examine front cover. Ask child what they think the book will be about.
* Always read with expression
* act out parts, have children chime during a re-reading, choose some interactive books with flaps, movement, rhymes etc…
* Relate story to their life if you can… Do you remember when….?
* Talk about characters, feelings, problem and solutions from the story.
* How do you think (character) feels? How would you feel if that happened to you?
* When finished reading, ask your child what their favorite part was or ask them to tell you the story or tell someone else about the story (retell).
* Read the story again and again if your child asks.
Time to Read
* 20-30 minutes per day
* choose good times to read as part of routines (after breakfast, before nap time, at bedtime etc….)
* reading books is a great one on one activity to bond with your child, snuggle and teach them something.
* let them see you reading too
* always have books available for them to look at
Mike Dlott is the the Director of Discovery Child Development Center in Morrisville, NC and the host of the Preschool and Beyond podcast.