You point her towards a story book but with a mischievous laugh, she runs off. You go after her and snug her firmly between your laps. However her persistent wriggles and squeals make it impossible for any meaningful reading to be done. AAAARGHH!!!
Frustrated, you give up. Maybe at 13 months she’s still too young for the books. Or maybe not!
It’s never too early to start raising a reader. However to succeed at this task, you must do it right. Hence before shoving books at your little one, first…
- Understand that at this age it is not so much about the words or stories. It’s about bonding with mum!
- Kids love imitating. So display your own love for books as a cue for your little one to follow
- Get them interested in words and stories by engaging their inquisitive minds in meaningful conversations about the world around them. Don’t be afraid to use the big words
- Cut down on passive television time and engage them in interactive activities which will develop their reasoning skills
- Invest in books which embody your little one’s interest and go for the colorful board and pop-up types which they will find easy to handle and manipulate
- Choose a feasible time that you can christen your ‘daily reading time’. It doesn’t necessarily have to be just before bedtime. Rather, go for whatever period works perfectly for you both. This will become a time out your little one will learn to daily expect and eventually look forward to
At this point they should be ready for the books, so…
- Begin with something short (e.g. a 45 seconds read). At the end of each read express enthusiastic excitement that they actually got through the entire book.
- Since kids love drama, be the characters in every story. Act out the parts! Be animated representations of Mama Bear, Snow White, The Giant, etc.
- Kids love to read the same story over and over again. That’s how they learn. So stifle that yawn and indulge them!