Did you know that there is significant research that literacy can start being developed as soon as a child is born?  This can be done by parents and family members spending time talking, telling stories and singing to children.  These activities start to form a child’s understanding of language.  It is also imperative to immerse a child in a language-rich environment environment full of interactive attention where they can develop through space exploration and cognitive thinking. 
Here are some suggestions from our day care in Phoenix to make reading time more interactive and encourage critical thinking:

Spend Time Reading to Your Child

Perhaps the greatest gift that parents and family members can give to a child is reading to them.   When a child is encouraged to see, touch and play with books while you are reading, an emotional connection between reading, language and the feelings of being comforted and supported is created.  

Encourage them to sound out words and make their favorite quotes fun and memorable. Ask them to point out to the pictures on the page that apply to what you are reading, such as pointing out who the main character is. Discussions and “what if” questions about the pictures and the story as kids get older helps to spark their creativity. When children attend circle time at our daycare facilities in the Phoenix area, our staff helps engage children into the story.

Model Reading

As children get older, they watch what Mom and Dad choose to spend their time doing. Strive to make reading time 15 to 30 minutes. It is a great positive family experience that helps them bond with you and even their siblings.  It is important for parents to set aside their distractions, stay off the phone and just sit back, relax, and read a great book with the family. 

Tell Stories and Encourage Imagination

Children love to tell stories. This can be encouraged by parents by just letting the children explore their imagination out loud.  You may also want to ask the child if you can write down his or her story and have them do the artwork to illustrate the story. This allows provides children with something to share when others come to visit!

We hope you find these bedtime reading tips helpful for your toddler. If you or someone you know is in need of child care services in Phoenix, there is only one name to know: Valley Child Care and Learning Center. We strive to make your children smile as they engage in our child learning centers. Book a free tour today!