For those of you who are aware, each year on March 2, children, families and schools all over the world celebrate and acknowledge Dr. Seuss' birthday. As far back as we can remember, Dr.Seuss has changed the way we look at books.
Reading doesn’t come easily and for those who don’t find that ‘love of reading’ then growing up and being able to read fluently can come at a cost. We definitely think that a parents’ love of reading came from their parents. Whether it was the very first time they opened the Dr. Seuss book, “Are you my mother?” and had their mother read it to them every night before bed, or any other book for that matter.
Dr. Seuss continues to inspire many children and adults around the world with his quirky stories and wild imagination. You might even find that your 4 year old son constantly asks you to read “Are you my mother?”, along with all the other books that he’s interested in, most likely books about machines and cars… anything with wheels really.
Growing up in a world that is heavily focused on technology, we understand that your role as a parent is to be a positive influence and expose your children to as many books as possible. You want them to be able to choose a book that they connect with and as silly as it sounds, be able to physically turn the pages instead of swiping left on an iPad. From this moment, you’ll realize that their love of reading is developing!
Being able to develop this love for reading, begins at home and we at All Superstars Preschool think it’s safe to say that if you were to use a Dr. Seuss book, and any book that focuses on the interest of your child, and focus on the language and pictures in these books; then reading will turn into a fun, joyous experience for you and your child.
We at All Superstars Preschool recommend these top tips for building up an adoration of books at home, and in turn develop the love for reading.
Tip 1 - Find a Space
Discover a space that is agreeable and where there is a lot of light! It’s that simple. You could have a reading corner or space set up at home, or you may simply just like to sit on the couch and cuddle up with your child. Try not to overthink this one!
Tip 2 - Set Time Aside Each Day
Set aside a special time every day to spend with your child reading. We think the perfect time to do this is before bed. Giving your child the power to choose the books they want to read is the perfect opportunity for them to be involved in the whole process and to develop a love for reading. You could even make a game out of it!
As a parent, it’s the perfect time to sit down and unwind after a busy day and to spend quality one-on-one time together. Allow your child to choose two books, no matter how big or small they are. It’s essentially their time to explore the books so it’s important to not take this away from them.
Tip 3 - Make it Fun
Make it fun and something both you and your child will look forward to each day. If your child is able to read a few words then give them lots of encouragement and praise. After all, we want them to feel like they're accomplishing something. If they aren’t up to that stage however, you can always change the tone and volume of your voice to make things more animated and fun! Children absolutely love it when you become the character in the book! Point to the pictures and encourage your child to read along with you if they know the words. Dr. Seuss books are great for this as they use lots of repetition.
Tip 4 - Keep it Up!
We bet you’ve said this phrase one too many times, “They’re just growing up so fast!” Well, don’t let that stop you from exposing them to books. Our advice is to read to your child and have them read to you no matter how old they are. Did you know that if you read to your child for only 20 minutes each day they will have heard approximately 1.8 million words per year. Just think how many words they would have heard by the time they’re in elementary school!
Not only does reading help with language development but it also promotes brain development. The proof is in the pudding when as a parent, you receive their preschool portfolio stating the following, “They are able to communicate all their needs and wants. His/her language exceeds his/her age developmental milestones and he/she is able to have conversations with peers and educators using numerous sentences”. We believe that these achievements stem from their love of reading and books. So, keep it up!
Tip 5 - Let the Story Continue
Once you finish reading that last page, why stop there? Just because you’ve finished reading the book doesn’t mean it all has to end there. Why not take the opportunity to ask your child about their favorite part, character or picture. You may even like to go further and ask questions like;
What would you have done if you were the character?
Did you want the story to end like that? Why or why not?
What stories do you like to read?
There are so many things that you can do at home to help your child develop their love of reading and books. Follow these tips and you’ll find that every time you go to the store, you’ll be buying a new book that your children want you to read to them, with them.
Just remember that Dr. Seuss was a master of words, real and imagined...
"Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.”