The ABCs

Of Reading to and With Your Child

A sk questions while reading together.  “What do you think will happen next?”

B uy books as gifts for birthdays, Christmas, or other holidays.

C hat about what is happening in the book and how it relates to everyday life.

D rop everything and read.  Set aside 20 minutes a day during which the whole family reads.

E xamine book illustrations in detail.  Select books that have large, bright pictures.

ind books that interest your child.  Make suggestions, but don’t turn reading into work.

G ive hints when your child gets stuck on a word.

H ave fun.  Smile and enjoy the story.  Read with a slow, relaxed voice and be expressive.

I nvite your child to the bookstore.  Take time to lounge in the chairs and browse the books.

J oin in your child’s reading successes.  Celebrate every small step with sincere praise.

K ids love to receive mail.  Send your child a magazine subscription in an area that interests him or her.

L earn to read with, and not just to, your child daily.  Read aloud, share ideas, and answer questions.

M odel reading.  Share with your child, whether you’re reading for information or for entertainment.

N ever force your child to read.  If you’re both too tired or discouraged to read, take a break.

O ffer your child a variety of reading materials, such as books, magazines, cereal boxes, comics, and newspapers.

P redict story elements, draw conclusions, and retell the story with your child.

Q uiz your child at the end of a story.  Informally, of course!

R eread books to familiarize your child with words and to build self-confidence.

S ing songs, recite poetry, and do fingerplays to help develop language and listening skills.

T ry to help your child understand that it’s okay to make mistakes.

U nderstand that reading is developmental and that it takes time and practice to become fluent.

V isit your local library on a regular basis.  Sign your child up for his or her own library card.

W elcome wordless picture books into your collections.  They generate conversation and allow the nonreader to create his or her own stories.

X hibit” patience when your child is selecting books.  Your support is empowering.

Y ou are the most important person in helping your child develop a lifelong love of reading.

Z ealous readers are the result of supportive and nurturing role models.