Here are some suggestions for making reading together something you and your child both enjoy:
- Your enthusiasm will affect your child. Get excited about reading and your child will be jumping up and down for reading time.
- Use different reading voices and expression. Be silly. Add sound effects. Explore your voice – it’s powerful!
- Let your child get involved. They can turn the pages, hold the book, point to characters, or mimic actions in the story. Children have boundless physical energy, so rather than fight a squirmy toddler or grabby baby, let them loose.
- If your child is hungry, give them a snack. If they get distracted and want to go play, take a break. Reading shouldn’t feel like a chore you have to “get through”.
- Make reading part of a daily routine. It’s much easier to remember to read every day if it’s what you do each night before bedtime, or during afternoon snack. Eventually your child will remind you it’s storytime!
- Keep books within reach.They should be as easy to find for your child as their favorite toys. Here are a few of our favorite places to stash books:
- Board book in the diaper bag
- Basket of books for baby in the living room
- A low bookshelf in your toddler’s room
- Picture book or magazines on the coffee table
- In the car – picture books make great road trip distractions
- Don’t rush the story. The real value in reading together isn’t about how many words you get through, it’s more about the interaction between you and your child. Feel free to answer your preschooler’s questions between each page, talk to your child about the book, sing a song, or insert your own thoughts as you go. Reading is not a race!
21 Day Challenge
This year we challenge you to make a resolution to read more with your child. They say it only takes 21 days to form a habit. Start one today that will make a lifetime of difference for your child.
To help you along the way, take the 21 Day Challenge. Simply read aloud to your child every day for the next 21 days,
and mark off the book icon each time you read together. When you’re all done, send your completed sheet back to us by February 5th, and we’ll enter you into a drawing for fun, kid-friendly prizes!