Teachers, doctors…all sorts of professionals tell us to read with our kids but no one ever tells us HOW TO read with them! So I thought it might be helpful to do just that. Here are my top 6 tips on How to read with young kids.
1. Snuggle: Get somewhere cozy and snuggle with your little one. Choose the right book. If you don’t know how to do that, check this post out. If you don’t have a reader yet you will be doing all of the reading (obviously).
2. Read with enthusiasm: Kids LOVE when adults read in animated voices so try to change-up your reading voice. You can make a different voice for different characters but you don’t have to. I often start with that then forget what the different characters sounded like and get them mixed up! Whatever voice you use, read with interest and excitement. If you’re interested they will be too.
4. Talk: Remember to stop off and on throughout the book and talk to your child about it. Talk about the pictures…the problem the character is having…something funny going on…. Whatever comes to mind. If they interrupt your reading take the time to talk about what has caught their interest.
5. Have FUN: Reading is supposed to be fun not a chore so don’t go into it thinking that you just have to get in your reading and get done so that you can get to something better.
6. Ask questions: Your reading experience isn’t over just because you finished reading the book! Talk about the book..the WHOLE book! Ask questions like: Did you like the main character? Why? Why not? Remember to talk about how YOU felt too! Your child enjoys hearing your opinion too. Did you like the way the author did _____? My teens and I often talk about the writer’s style too. Sometimes we even research the author to learn a little more about his/her life. It makes reading their stories more interesting to have a little back ground. Talk with even young kids about the author if there’s a picture or information about the author in the book, like Dr. Seuss.