September 10, 2010, Newsletter Issue #221: Read to Your Child

Tip of the Week

One of the best ways to ensure your child's success in school is by reading to him or her. Research has proven that children that are exposed to lots of language (both verbal and written) tend to do better in school. It doesn't matter what you read, as long as it peaks your child's interest and you sit and look at the pages together. Reading to a child shows them, without any instruction, that books are read from front to back and words are read from left to right. They figure this out on their own as they watch you read. Books provide information and insight to things that your child may never be exposed to in normal daily life. Your son may see a picture of a parachute in a book, and he can learn what it does and what it is used for without ever even touching one. Reading also provides special quality time together and builds focusing skills. Here are some tips for making reading fun for your preschooler.

Let your preschooler choose the books. Take a trip to your local library and let your child find some books he is interested in.
Go with tried-and-true favorites. There is a reason that the book,  Where The Wild Things Are, continues to be on the bestseller list. Find some others that are popular among preschoolers.
Read at a time when your child is most receptive, such as right before bed or when she wakes up from a nap. Don't force your child to sit and read a book with you if he's full of energy and wants to play. Let him run around first.
Make reading interactive. Encourage your child's participation in the story by asking questions or asking her to point out things. If you've read the book before, inquire about what is going to happen next.
Preschoolers tend to have a favorite book that they want you to read over and over again. Build his confidence by asking him to read that book to you once you 're sure he's memorized it.

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