Parents as reading models...

boy sitting on stack of books Why read aloud to your child:

Make time in your daily schedule of activities to read aloud to your child. Even if your primary-aged child has been assigned to read to you, don't forget that you are the model of what readers learn to do. By reading aloud to your child, he/she once again hears and sees what is involved in being a reader. Your child learns letters make words. Words make sentences. Sentences make stories or give information.

Read aloud time can also be a special bonding time. Find joy in this time with your child. Here are some things to think about:

*Reading aloud develops a positive attitude toward books as a source of pleasure and information.
*Reading aloud increases your child's vocabulary.
*Reading aloud expands your child's knowledge base.
*Reading aloud to your child stimulates your child's imagination.
*Reading aloud to your child enhances listening skills.
*Reading aloud to your child promotes confidence and self-esteem.

Choosing books to read aloud:

*Choose books you enjoy reading or or even those you enjoyed as a child. Your enthusiasm will be contagious.

*Select books that are age and developmentally appropriate. Remember, you are the one reading aloud. It is appropriate to read books that your child can't as long as it meets those criteria.

*Look for books that support and extend your child's special needs and interests. For example:
*OWEN by Kevin Henkes deals with a child's need for a
security blanket.
*COURDUROY by Don Freeman is about the importance of
finding a friend.
*RAINBOW FISH by Marcus Pfister is about the rewards of

*If the book you or your child has chosen isn't working, stop!! It is perfectly okay to "abandon" a book that is not enjoyable. You can simply say,"I see this book is not working for us. Let's find another." Don't spoil the reading experience by plugging through a book just to finish it. There are no quizzes or tests. Remember, the joy of reading and being a reader is the key!

Happy Reading!!

For terrific information and ideas: www.scholastic.com