Summer learning is more important now than ever which is why we want you to read, sing, talk, play, and draw/write as much as possible.
We’re here to help you share the love of reading and learning with your children and teens and reconnect you to everything the library has to offer. But there are also simple (and fun) things you can do at home to help your children build reading muscles and gain confidence--no matter their age.
Singing helps children recognize and remember the smaller sounds that make up words. Try singing along to some of our favorite storytime songs, here.
DRAW / WRITE
Drawing (or even just scribbling!) develops fine motor skills and helps children learn to connect shapes with letters. In fact, writing starts long before your child is physically able to hold a pencil. Writing begins with caring adults writing down a description of their latest drawing, a short story they told or their name. Through these experiences, your child starts to connect what they say with words on the page. When they start learning how to read, writing will support their reading and vice versa. Writers are readers and readers are writers!
Playing is how children learn best. Through play, they grow socially, emotionally and cognitively – all at the same time. Try to find some time each week to allow yourself to play together. Let your child lead the play. Being the leader will build communication and literacy skills—not to mention confidence.
Try creating your own story inspired by an object in your home or a family member. Stories need a beginning, middle and an end, but the rest is only limited by your imagination.
Talking with children helps them learn how language works and builds their vocabulary. Give your little one words. When they point to an object and say “I want,” hand them the object and say “Oh, you want the red ball, etc.” Part of talking is also listening. As your child becomes more verbal, find time each day to listen to what they want to say. Their thoughts and feelings are important to their emotional development AND sharing them with you increases their literacy.
Reading with children develops their language and listening skills, sparks their imaginations, and helps them understand the world around them. High-quality books are more likely to introduce rare words to your child than conversation or television. Need help finding the right books for your child? Click here.
Believe it or not, caregivers are the best people to help their children learn these fundamental practices and grow into readers just by doing everyday things with them. After all, children learn by doing – and they love doing things with you. Use the suggestions above as a guide, and build on them as your child grows and develops. The best part--they're totally doable for parents and caregivers and they can be adapted to suit a child’s individual learning needs.
Not sure where to start? Visit any of our library locations to check out books, attend a storytime, explore technology, or speak with a Youth Services team member.