“Reading should not be presented to children as a chore, a duty. It should be offered as a gift.” – Kate DiCamillo
Reading is not the only way to help with your child’s language and literacy development. You and your child might like to make up your own stories, or share family stories. Your child will learn words and develop language skills from the songs, stories and conversations you share together.
You and your child can read, sing and tell stories in whatever language you feel most comfortable speaking. Using a language you are comfortable with helps to make reading, singing and storytelling more fun for you and your child. Your child will learn that words are made up of different letters, syllables and sounds, and that words usually link to the pictures on the page.
With so much competition for their time, how can you encourage your children to make time for reading? Here are six tips to help you enjoy a story time together.
- Talk more with your child. Ask your child to describe his/her day and what he/she did
- Look at books or read with your child at least 20 minutes a day. It’s okay to read his/her favourite book over and over, or visit the library to get different books.
- Before reading the words in a book, look at and talk about the pictures. Can you guess what the story might be about?
- While reading a book together, connect the book to his/ her personal experiences, or ask him/her what he/she thinks might happen next in the story.
- After reading a book, talk about his/her favourite parts.
- Model good reading habits by reading books, newspapers or magazines for your own enjoyment.