Getting your child interested in books starts long before they can read words or recognize letters. In fact, the best way to instill a love of reading is to make books a part of their life as early as possible. If you’re not sure where to start, keep reading for six tips on how to help your little one become a confident and enthusiastic reader!
- Read early, read often: Even the youngest among us can enjoy a good book! Sitting down to read with your baby is a recipe for quality time and snuggles, meaning that you can build positive associations with books long before your child understands the words. Illustrations can also be of high interest to a young audience. When picking out books to share with baby, look for short books with high-contrast illustrations to draw their attention.
- Make reading interactive: Involve your little one in the reading process whenever possible. Pointing and labelling different illustrations is an invitation for them to do the same – not to mention a chance to build their vocabulary. Asking questions about what they see is another tactic for keeping your baby or toddler interested in the book.
- Have books available at home: Although it may not seem like it, simply having books available in your home is one of the single most important things you can do to encourage your budding reader! Books can get expensive, though, so consider checking out some from the library, visiting a Little Free Library in your community, or registering for Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library (currently available in parts of Kenton County, but it’s rolling out state-wide).
- Bring your child to storytime: Storytime is the perfect opportunity to reinforce the idea that reading is fun. Your child gets to enjoy books in an interactive, social environment, and you get a break from reading the same book for the fourth time in a row!
- Help your child sign up for a library card: If you have a library account in good standing, then your child is eligible for a library card as well. Choosing and checking out books can make a trip to the library even more exciting for your toddler or preschooler. If they're not ready for their own account quite yet, try to find other ways to involve them, such as letting them choose some books on their own, or giving them their very own bag to carry books home in.
- Be a reader yourself: It’s no secret that toddlers love to copy what they see, and that applies to reading as well! Finding some time to read on your own helps establish a culture of reading in your home and encourages young ones to spend their time the same way.
From high-contrast baby books to interactive books for your busy toddler, these books are sure to make reading with your child a fun experience!