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Importance of Reading To Your Child

Reading to your child is not something you do just to help them fall asleep Reading to your child helps enhance their ability to learn through listening, repetition and visual stimulants. What better way to teach the importance of reading by showing them you read yourself? Reading to them has a positive effect on a child’s attitude toward reading and their ability to read. Help your child open up the world of reading, writing and imagination.

Why is reading important?

According to Kyla Boyse, RN: “A child’s reading skills are important to their success in school and work. In addition, reading can be a fun and imaginative activity for children, which opens doors to all kinds of new worlds for them.  Reading and writing are important ways we use language to communicate.

Choosing the right book using these rules:

  1. Pick a random page from a book.
  2. If your child has problems reading more than 4 words on that page, that book might be too hard for them.
  3. If your child doesn’t have any problems reading the book, then it is too easy and they need to pick a little more challenging book.

The book needs to have some challenging words, but not too many. The goal is to help the child comprehend and enjoy the book, while at the same time learn new words.

Tackle a new words:

  1. Ask your child to sound out an unknown word.
  2. Help them memorize irregular words.
  3. Use suffixes, prefixes, and root words.

Support & Encourage:

Challenge your child to sound out new words, but always supply the word before the frustration sets in. After your child has read a story, reread it aloud yourself so that they can enjoy it without interruption. Help them understand the importance of reading.

Make reading a priority:

Set aside 10 minutes to an hour every day to read to your child or have them read to you. This will get them in a good habit of reading and helps them become interested in reading.

Creating the right atmosphere:

Don’t turn on the TV and distract the child. Help them find a quiet place to read. Be a good role model and read a book in front of your child while they are reading their book. That will help support the value of reading.

Make reading fun & reading aloud to your child:

Reading to your child is a simple and pleasant process. Read books beyond their reading level and build their vocabulary by exposing new words. Reading aloud is also a good way for you to model reading smoothly and with expression. Make sure you choose a new book every time you read to them. It can help keep them interested and explore their imagination. And not all reading has to be done with a book Toys and games can provide them with opportunities to learn new words and the achievement of getting a word right.

Any way you can provide a way to get your child to learn and enjoy reading will help them as they grow and develop communication skills.

What Children Can Learn From Educational Toys

All children love to have fun, play and use their imagination. During that time, there is a process of learning going on. That process of learning can best be seen when they’re playing and selecting the best educational toys can help your child’s growth and potential. Anytime your child is entertained and learning is a good thing. The concept of an educational toy does not simply mean number games or letter rearrangement activities. Toys that encourage the development of the necessary skills like motor, vision, eye-hand, cognitive, creative, imaginative, social, emotional, hearing and listening are valuable to developmental play time.

According to Drs. Dorothy and Jerome Singer of Yale University, there are six essential elements of developmental play that can be seen throughout age-appropriate educational toys and they help give us a better understanding of how to select toys for our children.

Six Essential Elements of Developmental Play

Motor Development: This is the enhancement of gross motor skills that use large muscle groups for activities such as kicking, balancing, running, jumping, lifting, climbing, hopping and swinging, and the development of more delicate fine motor skills such as the pincher grip of thumb and forefinger. For gross motor skills, look for toys that require large and controlled movements to allow him to gain better muscle control. These include wagons, play strollers, tricycles, ride-on-cars, jump ropes, hula hoops and hopscotch sets.  For fine motor skills, look for toys that allow your child to pick up and manipulate small objects such  puzzles, play foam, keys & locks and craft related activities.

Vision and Eye-Hand Development: This involves the expansion of keen powers of perception and of the ability to use the eyes and hands together in coordination to perform a task. Look for toys that involve scooping, digging, throwing, stirring, pouring, squirting and picking up small objects.

Cognitive Development: Skills of this nature involve the advancement of the ability to learn new knowledge and to understand and apply this knowledge. This will allow your child to improve his or her capacity for mental activities such as evaluating, reasoning, judging, interpreting, comparing and contrasting, inferring, predicting, sequencing and visualizing. This skill helps your child master specific content knowledge relating to vocabulary, mathematics, science and more. Seek out toys that require the use of logic, finding solutions, solving problems and identifying patterns. These include board games, like  River Crossing or Railroad Rush Hour, science and nature kits, building or model sets and things that have pieces that need put together.

Hearing, Listening, and Voice: This comprises the promotion of skills related to the senses and communication. Development of this area allows your child to discriminate between different types of sensory input. Look for toys that appeal to your child’s senses, such as maraca shakers, pennywhistle, ukulele and  jinglebands.

Social and Emotional Development: Skills of this kind include the improvement of how your child interacts with others and how the child behaves.  Toys to seek out include balls they can throw back and forth to other children, board games, and card games.

Creative and Imaginative Development: This involves the advancement of skills relating to pretending about the world and using the imagination to explore new ideas and possible solutions to problems. Toys to look for include arts and crafts, costumes, props and pretend toys.

What is a Bilibo, you ask?

Bilibo is a new kind of toy – the elementary shells leave room for the child’s imagination. Instead of imposing a specific play pattern, Bilibo is open for a wide range of interpretations and encourages children to invent their own games, to play and have fun in an active and creative way. Indoors and outdoors, in the sand-pit, at the water or even in the snow – Bilibo is full of surprises…

Bilibo is a companion for children from the first year onward and inspires a large variety of playing behaviors. According to their age and interests, children will interpret the shells in many different ways.

The soft, round shapes and strong colors stimulate the senses and the child’s innate curiosity. They beg to be touched and handled. Toddlers will move them around, fill them with objects, sand or water and empty them again.

The shells can be aligned or stacked in many ways. Like three-dimensional puzzle pieces, two shells are joined to form a sphere – a friendly face with a broad smile. Playfully the children train their sense of space as well as hand-eye coordination.

When growing older, children will discover new ways of using the shells. Rocking and spinning for instance are great fun and help develop motor skills and the child’s sense of balance.

Role-playing and make-believe games are vital for the child’s social development and powers of imagination. Again, Bilibo shines as a wonderful accessory and is swiftly turned into a cradle for puppets, a turtle shell, a drum, a cooking pot, a ship, or a hill with coves giving shelter to animals… the imagination of children knows no limits…

Invented by child development experts. For ages 2 to 7.

Winner of Dr. Toy 10 Best Active Products and Dr. Toy 100 Best Children’s Products.

Child’s Play – Games To Enhance Auditory Skills

Our senses are not simply tools to help us thrive and survive in the world; they can be excellent “accessories” for tons of fun with children!  Here are a few activities to try with kids to get them to listen to the sounds around them!


  1. Name that Sound – my preschooler LOVES playing this game, and it is perfect to play just about anywhere.  We take a blanket and crawl underneath it and stay really still, listening to sounds around us to identify.  When the weather is good, this is a great game to try outdoors, whether the sounds are cars on the road, birds or wind in the trees or neighbors talking nearby.  By blocking the other senses (sight and smell in particular), the sense of hearing is heightened.  Playing indoors is just as fun, as we discover sounds like the refrigerator making ice, the clock ticking, and the heater turning on!
  2. Telegraph – this classic game is good to play with a group of children.  Have one person start by whispering a simple message into another person’s ear, such as “My mother made eggs for breakfast.”.  Once the message is received, each person turns to another to whisper and pass it along until it reaches the last person.  That person states the message out loud and the group can find out how close the original message and the final message are.  It is a great tool to use to teach children to listen for detail!
  3. Name that Noise – much like the song, “Old Macdonald”, children create sounds and then try to identify them.  The sounds don’t have to be just animal sounds made with voice, though.  Try a squeeky door, a rhythm that is clapped out, or humming a popular song.
  4. Make A Sound Band – using only your body, try to create sounds and rhythms to fit together as a “band”.  Have several people create sound without the aid of instruments, such as a whistle, a clap, leg pats, tapping the cheeks, or other various sounds.  Put them together for a unique instrumentation!
  5. Marco Polo – this famous “pool game” doesn’t have to be played in the heat of the summer alone!  Have the person who is “it” stand with his or her eyes shut.  Another person should move quietly around him or her, stop and clap a few times softly.  “It” should point to where he or she believes the clapper is standing.  This hones in on discriminatory hearing skills – being able to select certain sounds when there might be other sounds in range as well.

Make Mealtime A Teachable Moment

I got a terrific idea from my son’s teacher this week.  This idea can be used with just about any subject being studied.  Take a piece of posterboard (12 x 18 inches) and have your child decorate it with anything that is currently being studied.  For example, if your child is learning his or her multiplicaction facts, have him or her write them around the edges of the posterboard.  Or, if your child is learning to identify colors or letters, do the same with that information.  Maybe your older child needs to memorize a timeline or a set of dates or events.  Write whatever subject it is on the posterboard, then cover it with clear Contact paper.  Viola!  Your child has made an instant, teachable placemat to use at mealtimes!

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