Our eldest Archie, two years and three months at the time of writing, is really enjoying reading and we are thrilled. I say ‘reading’, he is really enjoying Mummy and Daddy reading to him and he is soaking up every word we speak like a sponge!. This is also really helping his speech and he is starting to string well constructed sentences together.
We have always found reading to be very important. My wife reads a lot of books. I on the other hand, not so much as I am too impatient. I begin with the best of intentions and then I thumb through the hundreds of pages and I want to have read it cover to cover already.
Anyway, we thought you might be interested in these little hints and tips which we found really useful.
- Sit close together when sharing a book and encourage your child to hold the book themselves and/or turn the pages.
- Don’t be afraid to use funny voices – it’s a great way to make your child giggle. And don’t be afraid to sing either (oh yes I said it!) – they won’t care whether you sing in tune or know the words!
- When you talk to your child about what’s going on in a book, give them plenty of time to respond. Try to ask questions that don’t require just yes or no answers. For example, ask them what they think will happen next or about how a character might be feeling.
- Sharing books isn’t just about the words – point to the pictures and relate them to something your child knows.
- Using a puppet to act out a story can help your child to understand what’s going on and learn how to pretend play. Why not pick a character from your book and use the puppet to show what they are doing?
- And lastly – make it fun! It does not matter how you read with a child, as long as you both enjoy the time together!