Our final meeting for the 2014 Spring Session was about Reading. The Association for Library Services to Children recommends that you try to make time every day to Talk, Sing, Play, Write, and Read with your children so that they will be ready to learn how to read in school. These are considered the Five Early Literacy Skills, and the key thing to remember is that they all encourage the development of vocabulary and imagination.
Many parents feel a need to push their kids to learn to read independently, as early as kindergarten or preschool. That is not what early literacy is about. Early literacy is about helping your preschool-aged children to develop a large vocabulary and imagination, so that when they are in school, where they will learn the mechanics of phonics and decoding and pronunciation, their minds will be ready for the work. As long as you are reading to them every day, your child will have all the exposure they need to books and will become a successful independent reader in due time.
Our letter of the day was R:
Our first book was Lola Reads to Leo by Anna McQuinn. It’s a cute book about the joy of reading, and also a great choice for toddlers who are experiencing a transition from having a new baby brother or sister. And although your toddler does NOT need to be able to read a book to a younger sibling on their own, I can vouch from my personal experience with my kids, that sharing books can be a fun and accessible way for your children to bond–especially if your toddler is surrounded by books that he/she has heard you read many times before. He/she can feel like the “big kid” who can now share that same story with the baby!
Our next book was Reading Makes You Feel Good by Todd Parr. His bright, bold illustrations are really accessible for babies and toddlers, and you can’t argue with the fact that knowing how to read makes you not only empowered to do anything you want, and it makes you feel great about yourself too.
I also told a story based on a funny book called Book! Book! Book! by Deborah Bruss. I had a little help from some cute stuffed animals and hand puppets. 🙂
I hope you all had a fun experience the past couple of months–I know I did! Thank you for being such great participants. It was truly a joy getting to know you and your adorable toddlers.
And if you haven’t had the opportunity yet to sign up for our Summer Reading Challenge, the signup is online now! Go to http://pasadenasr.evanced.info and click on Children Summer Reading Challenge 2014. Then click “Sign Me Up” to sign your child up, and afterward you can add members such as yourself, your spouse, or your other children. If you want assistance signing up, we are happy to help you at the Children’s Desk.
I hope to see you at our various programs and events throughout the summer!