The statistics don’t lie. Reading to your child from the time of their birth is extremely important for setting them up for success. While reading, they are exposed to a wide range of ideas and new worlds, which is vital for the brain development of your child. Reading to your child helps to boost their sense of wonder and ability to comprehend complex scenarios. This early development can be achieved well before they are ready to start reading on their own, it engenders reading readiness. Any way you look at it, children need to be exposed to books outside of the classroom. Reading becomes even more crucial as they age. By Kindergarten your child should be reading at least 20 minutes a day, in addition to the reading they are doing at school. With summer approaching, now is an important time to make this practice a habit.

The Fast Facts!

How to Make it Happen:

Rather than setting a timer and making your child unplug for 20 minutes, we suggest you get a little creative to make the process more engaging. The most important rule to follow is finding books that your child is interested in. Your local bookstore is a great place to start! Do not be afraid to ask for help in making your selections, librarians and bookstore employees will be more than willing to point you in the right direction. Here are some ideas that can make their reading experience more meaningful.

  1. Get out your smartphone to have them create their very own audiobook! Your child should practice reading over the book a few times before recording. Once he or she becomes comfortable with the material, get out the recording app on your phone to let them give being a narrator a go! Not only will this help to build fluency, but you will love to listen back to this years later.
  2. While reading with your child, have them make predictions about what will happen next. This helps to promote comprehension skills while keeping them engaged in the story. The trick is to engage in open discussions about their predictions and their rationale behind them.
  3. Taking a summer road trip? There are plenty of intriguing, age-appropriate, non-fiction books that range in topics from National Parks to famous historical figures. The family beach trip will become more memorable when you know the history of the place you are visiting.
  4. Take the time to build reading into your child’s everyday activities. Words are all around us. Incorporate everyday items such as brochures, signs, and recipes into your reading list.
  5. Make a list of books that have movies based on them and read before you watch. This can make for a fun way to get your child excited about reading.  The excitement on their faces as they compare and contrast what version was better will say it all!

Every parent wants to give their child the best future they can and reading is an important part of making their bright future a reality. This summer make sure your child avoids taking a step back in their reading – after all, it only takes 20 minutes a day for a lifetime of benefits.