Create that magic by reading to children
I just cannot stop emphasizing the importance of books in our lives and how important it is for parents and teachers to start reading to children early.
Books! In the hands of babies and toddlers have a hard life, but a valuable one! Parents should not stop children from picking up a book just because they are going to tear or spoil them.Choosing and providing the right books according to the child’s age is the most important part. This can determine the interest the children develop for further reading.
When reading to the children it is important to keep a few things in mind.
- Sit in a comfortable place without any distractions
- Give a choice of two books and read the one the child chooses.
- Look at the pictures and talk about what you see.
- When a book is opened so that 2 pages are visible side by side, the content should be considered separately. Children see the two pages as a whole. If the left and right pages are showing two different scenarios, it is advisable to cover the right and then the left page so that the child learns to consider the pictures in the right sequence.
- Choose a variety of books from fiction and non-fiction.
- Stories should be short and relatable.
- Give hard bound laminated books that can handle rough use.
- Choose books with colourful simple illustrations. The text should be large with short simple sentences.
- Run your finger from left to right as you read the text.
- Use props along with your stories.
So, what is it that children gain from browsing through a book? Well a lot! Let us look at some of the foundation skills that are built in children.
- When parents model the right way to handle books, children learn to respect and take responsibility for their own belongings and for borrowed things.
- Children learn that pictures convey a story.
- A sequence of events makes a story.
- A sequence of letters make words and they have meaning. Letters written in a sequence are sounded the same every time and they have the same meaning always. E.g. “d-o-g”.
- They learn that text is read from left to right and from top to bottom.
- Children’s listening skills improve.
- Children’s thinking skills are enhanced when parents throw in a question or two while they read to their children.
- Most important of all, that reading can be enriching and fun activity to be enjoyed on one to one or as a whole family.
Some of the popular children books recommended are:
(a) “Brown bear brown bear”, “The very hungry caterpillar” by Eric Carl
(b) “Good night Moon” by Margaret Wise Brown and Clement Hurd
(c )“Itsy Bitsy Spider “ by Kate Toms
(d)“Colors Everywhere” by Sam McBratney
(e) “What the Ladybird Heard” by Julia Donaldson
(f) “There Was An Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly” by Pam Adams
(g) “Owl Babies” by Martin Waddell