Reading a book

The primary and best tip to share books with young children is to have fun while doing it. If children are engaged and enjoy what they are doing, they will start to learn. When they interact positively with books, they will grow to like reading. This simultaneously encourages them to continue seeking literacy materials as they grow. Here are more ideas on how you can instill early literacy habits in your toddler.

A Few Minutes of Reading

Young children can only sit still for so long as their attention span is generally much shorter. Do not force your child to read continuously over an extended period of time unless they really want to. Spending just a few minutes at any single time is fine even if you are unable to finish an entire story. You may even find that your child may want to linger at a particular page longer than the others or switch books just after several minutes. Either way, let them explore their books in their own ways.

Talk or Sing Along

You do not necessarily need to read the words in a book to tell a story. You can talk or sing about the pictures. This method may entice your child more as an element of fun has been added.

Let Children Turn the Pages

Let your toddler turn the pages on their own so as to keep them engaged. Even if they miss a page or two, it is fine. Just carry on from whichever page your toddler brings you to.

Do Not Leave Out the Cover Page

Show your toddler the cover of the book that you are reading. You can describe the pictures on the cover and explain to them what is the story all about. You may also wish to ask your toddler what they think the story is all about.

Point as You Read

Pointing to the words as you read them out loud will enable your toddler to follow closely instead of drifting away and losing interest.

Make the Words Come Alive

Use special voices for each character to make the story come alive. You may also use gestures or body movements to be as expressive as possible.

Make the Story Personal

Relate the story to your own personal life by including your own friends and family, pets, neighbors, and others so as to pique your toddler’s interests.

Ask Questions

Do not be the only one reading while your toddler listens. Keep them engaged by asking questions from time to time. Share a similar experience and ask what their thoughts are about the incident.

Let Children Tell the Story

Children as young as 3 years old can easily memorize a story by hard. Let them tell the story instead even if they are still unable to read. Let them narrate the pictures with their own words.

These are simple tips you can try with your toddler during reading time. They may not work initially but as you make them a habit, you are bound to see improvements.

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