Sunday, April 13, 2014

How Much Do Books Matter for Kids?

Take a look at this interesting piece, and wonderful infographic from First Book. It speaks to the positive effects of being a reader, and confirms the importance of surrounding our children with BOOKS!

Seek out books. Be creative. As warmer weather appears to be here to stay, there are new opportunities to pick up books for great prices. Check out yard sales where many people like to recycle books their own children have outgrown. Public libraries also have annual sales that provide books for sale at crazy  low prices. (And as a side benefit, the sale proceeds can help the library purchase new books. So it is a win-win situation for all.)

Your child can never have too many BOOKS!

Saturday, March 22, 2014


For some children, humor is the key to hooking them into reading. A silly book allows children to let go and laugh. Humor is also a good way to engage you child in a discussion about a topic or issue. If your child is dealing with a sibling or school issue, or even a falling-down period, laughing at a character going through something similar can put it in perspective and give your child some release.

And keep in mind that humor for your preschooler may not even seem so funny to you. Clearly your sense of humor has evolved. But appreciate silliness for what it offers your child. And, if you get in a silly mood, you are guaranteed to have a good time yourself. 

Friday, January 31, 2014

Take Your Child to the Library Day!

All Over the United States and Canada, a new holiday is emerging: Take Your Child to the Library Day. It is celebrated on February 1.

Well, as a huge fan of libraries and a proponent of introducing your young child to public libraries, this is a day I can celebrate in a big way.

Even if this "holiday" only serves to remind you that libraries are there--and a valuable resource--then it is worth the fanfare. 

Go tomorrow.  Go often. The library in your hometown holds amazing treasure for you and  your child.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

Multi-Media is the Message

Here is somethng that is fun to do with your preschooler--and can also help her develop her critical thinking skills. Read a book together. Then watch the movie version--on DVD or online. Talk with your preschooler about what happened in the movie. How it was different from the book? How was it similar? Did it have the same ending? If not, how were the endings different? Talk about music and how it adds to the story. Which version did she like better and why? See how many similarities and differences your child can come up with . . . She’s on her way to becoming a critic! 

Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Make a Reading Resolution

As 2013 comes to and end and we anticipate a shiny new year, resolves to read more--with your family.  Make time for reading aloud with your young children, and even for a regular story hour with your whole family. It is a wonderful way to feel closer and also spread the message that reading is a joyful experience.

Check out this wonderful article by Pam Allyn, Director of LitWorld and LitLife, two organizations committed to literacy.

Happy and healthy new year to you and your family!

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Wind Down and Read

If you are lucky enough to have some time off from work, your children home from school, and a little free time, use it to read with your young child.

Find some quiet spot to curl up with your preschooler, and enjoy a favorite story book, or a brand new book that was a holiday gift. Seize those precious moments and forget about the shopping and cooking and pressures of the season. It will do you good! And it will help your young child feel the familiar comfort of reading together during what can be a hectic time.

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Author! Author!

If your child really, really enjoys a book, do some research. Find out if the author of her favorite book has written other books. If so, get your hands on them. Do a search and find photos or biographical information about the author. Many authors have their own websites so it is easy-breezy to get the facts. Show your child the sites and talk about the author and his or her life.

This pursuit helps children understand that books are written by real people who have ideas and feelings and they lead their own lives . . . that might include their own family and perhaps even some pets. 

You are teaching your preschooler that books are the creations of real people who come up with ideas and then share them in the form of a book. You are teaching her to respect the creative process and to understand that books come from people—not just libraries and bookstores! This will help your child gain appreciation for the writing process as well as the idea of authorship. And it might just inspire your budding writer to think about sharing her own ideas


There are all kinds of readers. Some—like my daughter and me—are never without a book to read for pleasure. Others—like my son—are careful, analytical, and curious readers who read primarily to seek information from the page.

No matter what kind of reader your child becomes, you can help him or her get started. After all, you are your child’s first teacher. And, best of all, you can have some fun in the process.

Please feel free to share your own ideas. Tell me about ways you've enjoyed reading with your child.