In order for your children to appreciate reading, it’s necessary to introduce them to books in pre-school years. You, the adults, play a fundamental role and together with your child, you should have fun reading! ☺
How to do it?
Here are 8 suggestions that will show you what to do to turn your children into passionate readers:
1) Push the pause button
A good habit to adopt when you’re reading a new book is to “push the pause button”. Stop often to make observations with your child, and ask questions about what is happening in the story. Be careful though not to turn it into an inquisition. Instead, you should make it seem as if you want to understand more with their help. Choose books relevant to their age.
Why? Obviously, to get them interested in the story and to answer questions that they probably have but don’t always ask.
2) Not just words
Choose books with lots of pictures. Pay attention to interesting details or clues that are useful in understanding what is happening in the story.
Why? Images are as equally important as words, and help to understand the story.
3) What does the child think?
Not necessarily only for older children, but younger ones also have an opinion and a conception of the future, even though it may be very simple. Ask them what they think will happen later or what they would do in a similar situation.
Why? This exercise will help develop their creativity and concept of time.
Hit the pause button at the right time and ask your child to read with you, emphasizing a rhyming word or a familiar phrase. This is most easily done with nursery rhymes but also with a story, where a short and intense phrase like “where did it go?!” or “what happens now?” will spur the child to interact.
Why? To make reading more engaging and to further capture their attention, and to get them involved.
5) Identify words
After reading, ask your child to identify certain images that you think best represent the story, from the page you have read. Discuss them together.
Why? This will help your child to increase his attention span and to stimulate his language ability, learning to discuss the text.
6) Read and draw
It’s a good habit to re-read books that feature stories that children love. A useful exercise to help children memorize letters and words is to circle or color with a marker all the letters which are meaningful to them, such as the first letter of their name, of their best friend or of their dog. This exercise can also be carried out with toddlers.
Why? It’ll help them to become familiar with the text and images, and to recognize and memorize letters.
7) Punctuation and intonation
Pay attention to punctuation marks, such as periods, commas, question and exclamation marks, reading with the correct intonation.
Why? To teach proper timing/rhythm for reading, broadly speaking, communication timing. It may seem trivial, but it really is an excellent exercise.
8) Change the words
After having read the same story many times, you can go ahead and change a few little keywords, like the name of the main character, the location where the story takes place (for example, say “the seven puppies” instead of “the seven dwarfs”).
Why? This exercise will stimulate their listening, auditory attention and I assure you, it’s really fun!
Your children will become passionate about reading and knowledge; they will ask you for books instead of toys, and you will be thrilled by these requests, because the time and money spent on culture is never wasted.
Discover Smart Tales
Reading for at least 20 minutes a day helps broaden your vocabulary and prepare you for the world of school. Choose the story to read together with your kid from the rich catalog of Smart Tales: will they prefer the adventures of Oscar the dinosaur or Luna the hen who flies into space?