Monday, 6 June 2011

Book-sharing with toddlers

There are some very big differences between reading a book to your toddler and "sharing" a book with your toddler.  Instead of spending time reading the text, which is often too complicated for your child to understand, make the experience an interactive one.  Talk about the pictures and what you see happening in the story, use  funny voices for characters and funny expressions and sound effects to keep your child's attention.  Make sure that your child has the opportunity to take turns and interact as well, by pointing, imitating your sounds and words and even just laughing at you being silly! 

As your toddler gets older, they may become more interested in hearing the story, and there are certainly some stories that are great to read to your toddler, but always be sure that you stay focused on sharing the experience with your child, and not just reading the story without their involvement.

Here are a few of my favorite books for toddlers:
  • Mortimer by Robert Munsch - look for the simplified board book version for preschoolers.  This story has some great natural sound effects built into as well as a catchy song.
  • Moo Baa La La La by Sandra Boynton - a cute story with lots of opportunity to talk about farm animals and make sounds.
  • Hand Hand Fingers Thumb by Al Perkins - this is a fun read with fun actions to go along with the rhyme. 
  • DK Publishing Touch and Feel books - these books come in a variety of themes (animals, play time, shapes etc.) and are great for getting toddlers interested in books and talking about concepts like soft, bumpy etc.

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