Thristina Woodhams 08.25.2022
Our children must see us read. It is even more important that we read with our children. As parents, we can use reading to propel our children into different cultures, regions, and eras. We can provide our youth with the opportunity to understand experiences in places that we never traveled to. We can give them access to a space of exploration and understanding, by offering them the world of literature.
Often, I have heard people laugh at those who believe in time travel. I truly believe that it exists Between the pages of a good book. Reading can take you to another time in another place with people you never met before. It can transform the way we feel about things we thought were the end, all be all, by allowing us to view something in a new light or from another point of view. Reading is such a powerful tool in a child’s life. It is the basis of education, communication, and it is the first step forward into the future.
My husband Zac, and I knew once our son was born that we would need to bridge the gap between reading and adventure for our little one. We wanted reading to become a task that our son would enjoy. We started reading to him almost instantly after birth. We would read things that interest us in the beginning but once he was old enough to repeat words we started reading the same book each night so that the words would become familiar to him over time. He even got to a stage where he would “play” read us the pages, but he would almost have the story right from memory. It was absolutely adorable.
Over time we grew as parents, and as partners. We experienced and explored the reading world with our little one at our side. In kindergarten, we took him to the public library. He was so excited to get his very own library card. Through our exploration, we found that when our little one had the opportunity to apply what he was reading to the world around him, he would retain the information at a higher rate.
People always ask us how we got our little one to love reading, and honestly, there are three main aspects that we have learned work the best. (I’m sure there are so many others too but these seem to have worked the best in our household)
- Let your little see you read for pleasure.
- READ to your little often.
- Find ways to help your child apply what they are reading to the world around them.
So, one and two are fairly simple. But that third one can be very tricky at times. There are so many ways to work this into everyday life. One way the Woodhams household has been able to accomplish making reading fun is a cute little receipt of BOOK, BAKE, and MAKE.
First, you read a BOOK about the subject (our example is for fall so we chose “Hello Fall” by Deborah Diesen, a super cute book for fall) Next, you BAKE a related snack (you can engage in conversation about the book and how the snack ties in while baking) Then you MAKE a craft that has an element(s) from the story or its characters (our example is a popsicle stick scarecrow).
We love our BOOK, BAKE, and MAKE weekends. The next time we read the book, we will often use the MAKE items to act out scenes. If you can help your child make the leap into loving reading, you will create endless opportunities for your child while they are little as well as long into their adulthood too.
We will continue to help your family make reading fun by sharing more tips for reading with littles and by posting a BOOK, BAKE, and MAKE post each month. Stay Tooned 🙂
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