In rereading my May 2011 issue of Parents while on vacation, I found Fancy Nancy’s Storytelling Tips the perfect reminder of the importance of reading. In this column, Jane O’Connor, author of the popular picture-book series, shared the story time tricks she’s picked up from reading to her sons—-and little fans:
Be Open Minded. “My boys loved Madeline, Eloise, & Beverly Cleary books growing up. So don’t be afraid to introduce “girl” titles to your son or ones considered for boys to your daughter.”
Power Down. “Smartphones can be tempting, but remember that reading is your kid’s one-on-one moment with you and he should have your complete focus.”
Choose Wisely. “Look for humor, tongue twisters, & a mix of not-too-lengthy text and fun illustrations (think Dr. Seuss) to keep your kid’s attention. Let him help you pick out the book, but remember to find something you want to read too: Once a kid latches onto a book, you’re going to be reading it a million times.”
Ham It Up. “Throwing in some funny voices will make you a star in your kid’s eyes. And don’t worry—you can’t embarrass yourself when your audience is your child.”
I’m a literary fanatic! I love the written word. Thus, reading to my daughter who is four is a priority. While on vacation (half across the world), we’ve only had a handful of books to read together for story time but we’ve made each reading session different to give new life to the same books! For instance, in Chicka, Chicka, ABC on the last page when the letters all fall out of the coconut tree, I read, “Oh No! All the animals fell out of the tree!” I then paused to see her instantaneous reaction: “Mommy, they’re letters not animals.” And I chimed in, “A is for alligator. B is for bear. C is for cat.” She loved this new twist to her book along with others such as playing I SPY the letter ____ with her Dr. Seuss book, Dr. Seuss’s ABC.
What is your child(ren)’s favorite book right now? Have you added interest to this book with new twists & turns in reading the book with him/her?