There are so many amazing reasons to read aloud to your child! Not only is it a wonderful way to spend quality time and bond with one another at the end of a busy day, but it also teaches and encourages children to explore a variety of skills and establishes a basis for children to learn about and develop a love of literacy!

Dori Walker, Betty Davila and Dr. Debby Schreiner are Instructional Coordinators with Stamford Public Schools at CLC William Pitt. They are giving their tips for reading aloud at home with your child and making it as interactive as possible, so that they get the most out of storytime!

What is the ideal place to go when I want to read with my child?

Find a comfortable, quiet place in your home with no distractions, background noise, television or phones. This way, both you and your child can concentrate.

How should I read?

Your child will learn from watching you. So, show them how to hold a book and how to turn the pages. Even trace your finger along the words as you read so they see that you read from left to right, top to bottom.

What skills does reading aloud help to build?

  • It teaches new vocabulary.
  • Increases oral language.
  • Develops children’s concept of print.
  • Is a great way to encourage communication between you and your child when you take the time to talk about characters, what happened in the book and how the characters feel.
  • Expands creativity, especially if you have your child re-enact the story after you finish reading or have them draw a picture of the story.
  • Develop attention and listening skills.
  • Foster a love of reading.

What does it mean to make reading an experience?

Reading with your child is more than just pulling a book off the shelf. It’s talk on paper. So pre-read the book if you can, so that you are able to read with enthusiasm. Remember, your child learns from you. So, if you’re excited, they will be too! Focus on appropriate vocabulary in the story that you can continue to use throughout the day at home so that you reinforce it when speaking to your child. You can even come up with a fun craft or recipe to do together at home, that ties in with the book. For example, if you read the book “Pancakes for Breakfast” by Tomie dePaola, make pancakes for breakfast the next day! This will help to create fond memories for your child surrounding the book you read together.

How do you talk to your child about what you read together?

Ask simple questions after you finish reading a book with your child. Talk about the characters and what happened in the story. Ask them:

  • Where did the story take place?
  • How did the characters feel?
  • Why do you think the character feels that way?
  • What was the problem in the story?
  • How was it solved?

If you’re looking for a great book to read with your child, click here for books CLC loves for babies, toddlers and preschoolers! Also, be sure to get your library card so that you and your child have access to as many books as possibly! Click here for details on signing up for your library card with The Ferguson Library!