Saturday, December 01, 2007

Ten Ways to Make Reading Part of Every Day

1. Keep Books in Reach
Make sure there are plenty of books where your child can easily see and reach them so he can pick one up whenever he wants. Include catalogs and magazines too!

2. Drawing Time
Build up your child's ability to hold writing implements and control her use of line just by letting her draw and color.

3. Write a Story Together
Have your child draw a picture and ask her what's happening within it or what she would title her drawing. Write down the story or title at the bottom. Encourage her to draw a series of pictures and develop her sense of story. You'll also empower her with the idea she can create stories herself.

4. Meet and Greet the Library
Bring your child along on trips to the library. Make it a familiar and friendly experience and show him that there is a place where he can freely access tons of books.

5. Stop, Look, and Ask While Your Child Listens
Make sure to pause and point things out to your child while you're reading. Ask questions about stories as you read them and discuss plots and characters after you're done to develop reading comprehension skills.

6. Make Your Own Books on Tape
Tired of reading the same books again and again? Record you or your child reading those books so she can listen to them whenever she wants -- at bedtime, while playing, or in the car.

7. Label Everything
Putting signs or stickers on things around the house is a great way to connect language with concrete objects. It lets your child know that everything has a name and a word attached to it.

8. How Was Your Day?
Expand your child's sense of narrative by giving simple explanations of what happened to you during an ordinary day. Tell him of happenings and how they affected later events. Ask him to tell you about his day, too.

9. Create an Alphabet Book
Take 26 pieces of heavy paper and write one letter from the alphabet on each. Challenge your child to draw pictures of things beginning with each letter. When she's finished at least one drawing per letter, bind it together, and present her with her novel work.

10. Rhyme Time
Challenge your child to come up with simple rhymes for words like "cat" and "ball." It's a fun game you can play anywhere and builds phonemic awareness.

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