Studies show, if a year-old baby mouths a book instead of looking and turning pages, they are behind in the early literacy skills needed to succeed. This startling revelation leads us to ask, how can we inspire literacy in the littlest? The task is not as daunting as it may seem. Little activities and habits can pave the way for our children to begin reading easily in the Kindergarten year if we start early.
Develop early reading habits by simply reading to your children nightly. Having age appropriate books, magazines, and puzzles give an easy start to literacy. These items are available for free at your local public library. Shopping local stores like 3-2-1 Books in Tyrone Mall, local thrift stores, or even Homegoods can provide a plethora of cheap options to stock your littles library. Keep sturdy board books in all the play areas in your home for easy reach and perusal. Make books part of play time and bedtime. Make books a habit early, and you won’t be cringing when reading becomes a graded homework activity. If you start reading two board books each night before bed, you have established a habit both parent and child look forward to and will continue for a lifetime.
Books, puzzles, magazines, caregiver
· Point and Name (any above material): simply point and name the animals, objects, or people on the page. This activity will help your toddler chose to “read the pictures,” which is a first step in reading. Another benefit is increased vocabulary and speech development.
· Alphabet Books, Puzzles: sing the ABC song daily, point to the letters in the book and the pictures. Ex: A, ah, ah, apple while pointing, will help your toddler learn print has meaning plus the added benefit of acquiring letter knowledge early.
Blush Gorsen is a mom, St Petersburg business owner, and 20-year veteran educator for both public and private schools. She now is a private teacher for in home private school and tutoring in NE St Petersburg