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Read Aloud Tips for Parents of Babies and Toddlers

Reading aloud with children is the single most important thing you can do to prepare a child for reading and learning. The Read Aloud 15 MINUTES National Campaign promotes parents reading aloud to their children at least 15 minutes every day starting at birth.

Parents are a child’s first and most important teacher. Begin your child’s journey of learning together.

  • Get excited! This is going to be fun! Enthusiasm is infectious, your child will catch it.
  • Read with expression. Go ahead! Use voices. Do sound effects. Be silly… your child will love it.
  • Point to the pictures and talk about them. Make them familiar: “Hey! That looks just like your ball.”
  • Even a squirmy baby may be listening. Give them their own book to hold or something to chew on while you read.
  • Hungry baby? It’s OK to offer snacks, nurse, or bottle feed while reading aloud. Do both!
  • If a restless baby stops your best efforts, then sing, recite a poem… and try again later.
  • Let your child turn the pages if they can. That’s how your child learns which end of the book is up, that letters are what you are reading, that words flow from left to right…
  • Babies love awesome pictures. Find books that have awesome pictures!
  • Little ones love rhyming, word play, and songs – provide a lot of books that feature them and see how babies gain language.
  • Short, simple board books are great for babies. Some of the best books have only a few words.
  • Make reading aloud a habit when your baby is tiny. It may soon become a treasured part of your day.
  • Provide variety, but be prepared for repetition. A range of books is fantastic – but don’t be surprised when baby wants the same beloved book over and over… and over.
  • Books, books everywhere, lots of stuff to read. Nurture a reader. Make books easy for your child to reach.
  • When reading aloud, find a comfortable spot where you will not be distracted.
  • Practice makes perfect – for the listener and the reader. The more you do it, the easier it will be.

Every Child Ready to Read @ Your Library

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Singing Through Your Day

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Building Early Literacy Through Play

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Read to Me: Read Aloud Tips for Parents

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What Kind of Book?

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