Grandparents Teach, too
Reading is important, especially now
“Literacy is a bridge from misery to hope.”-Kofi Anan
“A parent or a teacher only had a lifetime; a good book can teach forever.” Louis L’Amour
“Outside of a dog, a book is a man’s best friend. Inside of a dog, it’s too dark to read.” Groucho Marx
According to the International Reading Association, reading to young children one or more times a day is extremely important and has a huge payoff. It is an easy activity that can begin in utero or soon after birth and continues through the school years. Preschool children who are read to on a daily basis will be ready to learn to read on their own. They will develop a rich vocabulary, as well as, love books.
Listening to family members read, discussing, and asking questions are the foundation for success in school and life. Every day, during the day or at nap or bedtime, sit close with children. They will relate comfort and security with reading. When possible, let children choose the books. Children often like to hear the same book over and over again.
Talk about the cover as teachers do. What is the title? Who is the author? Show how to hold the book and turn the pages as you go. Look at the pictures, guess what is going to happen, talk about the characters. Sometimes, point to the words as you read along. Encourage questions, and let your preschooler join in to say the fun parts or name things.
When you are finished, talk together about the pictures you saw or about what happened in the story. What is your favorite part? Which pictures do you like best? How do pictures and words get into a book?
Older children will enjoy hearing you read from kid’s magazines or longer picture/story books. Take turns reading paragraphs once they develop reading skills or have books memorized.
Have the books available for children to look over on their own. It’s a god idea to have a special box or shelf for the books where the family meets most often.
Sometimes families need a little extra motivation for older readers. You can create a BINGO card and design your own rewards. Keep a log with the book title, amount of minutes, or pages and sign it. Here are a few ideas to write on the Bingo card. When a row or card is full you can decide a special family reward.
Here are some suggestions for squares to get started: Read a book under a tree. Read a book to someone else. Read in a fort. Read on a beach towel. Read on Friday, Read a non-fiction book. Read with a flashlight. Read to a grandparent. For more see grandparentsteachtoo.blogspot.com or wnmufm.org/learning through the seasons.
EDITOR’S NOTE: Grandparents Teach, Too is a non-profit organization of elementary and preschool teachers from Marquette, Michigan. The writers include: Jan Sabin, Mary Davis, Jean Hetrick, Cheryl Anderegg, Esther Macalady, Colleen Walker, Fran Darling, and Iris Katers. Their mission since 2009 is to help parents, grandparents, and other caregivers of young children provide fun activities to help prepare young children for school and a life long love of learning. They are supported by Great Start, Parent Awareness of Michigan, the U.P. Association for the Education of Young Children, Northern Michigan School of Education, the Upper Peninsula Children’s Museum and the Northern Michigan University Center for Economic Education.