Most parents understand that reading needs to be an important part of their child’s life, even from a very young age. It is recommended that you start reading to your infant at bedtime and encourage them to look at books as they become toddlers. It teaches them a love of stories and can help them develop not only reading as a skill, but talking and more. Many books also teach children little life’s lessons about sharing or playing together with friends that will help them develop their personality as well. The thing is, most parents never ask themselves whether they are reading the right type of books out loud to their child. You may not think it is important that you find the right ones to read, the right areas to read, the right times, and other things. Now, is a great time for you to do so because it is important to understand what makes a good read aloud book.
It is important that a child be able to relate to the book you are reading in some way. If they are reading it aloud to you, it is even more important that it isn’t just words on a page. A story about a little girl for a girl and vice versa or perhaps a child dealing with a situation that your child may be going through are both great ideas. You can also choose stories that appeal to them in other ways, for instance, their favorite cartoon characters, their favorite animals, or even their favorite fictional thing. If your child is able to relate to a story, they will be more inclined to focus on the words rather than just listen. You can further increase the success of it by talking to them about the story you will read or have them read before you open the book. You can tell them or have them look at the cover page and guess what the story may be about. You should also read with excitement. Use hand gestures, different character voices, and more can all be helpful in keeping a child focused.
The Right Time
If you have to pull your child away from a favorite game or from outside playing, they will be less likely to focus on the story; even if it is something that they normally love to read about or listen to. The same is true for bedtime and a child that is really sleepy. Ideally, you will read aloud when the room is quiet and you both are relaxed.
The Best Stories
Some great stories you may consider include titles such as, “The Day the Crayons Quit”, “The Little Prince”, “There Was a Tree” and “My Name is Maria Isabell”. There are also old favorites which may include “The Little Red Hen” or “The Pokey Puppy” type books. There are many books available for all age ranges. You may also want to check out the first grade read alouds, which lists books that are ideal for beginning readers and parents. They are stories that have a lot of fun characters and a great storyline that will appeal to most all children.