One of the first steps to becoming a reader is developing positive reading behaviors. Even before children can "read", they should be involved with books and print in a positive way. Children who have developed positive reading behaviors choose to read. They enjoy pretend reading, sharing ideas, and asking questions about stories.
- Read to your child on a daily basis. You may want to establish a nightly routine of a bedtime story.
- Talk with your child about stories you have read together.
- Allow your child to "read" familiar stories to you. Accept his/her version of the story.
- Get a public library card for your child.
- Allow your child to select the story he/she would like to hear, even if you have already read it 100 times.
- Provide a special place for your child to keep his/her personal books and library books. This special place will send the message that books are important.
- Select different types of books and a wide variety of reading materials for your child to choose from (e.g., magazines, newspapers, nursery rhymes, fairy tales, recipes).
- Point out print in the environment (e.g., signs, cereal boxes, restaurants).
- Give books as gifts. Select high quality books with detailed illustrations. If you are not sure, ask Ms. Cooke or a salesperson at the bookstore.
- Be a model. Let your child see you reading. Remember, he/she wants to grow up to be just like you!