Raising Readers in Story County

Read Aloud Tips

Research shows that reading aloud with children is the single most important thing you can do to prepare a child for reading and learning. Parents are a child's first and most important teacher. Begin your child's journey of learning today!

Dr. Jill Alexander, M.D. is a pediatrician at McFarland Clinic in Ames and has a great list of reading tips for Reading to Your Child

These 15 Read Aloud tips were created by Read Aloud 15 Minutes (www.readaloud.org)

  1. Get excited! This is going to be fun! Enthusiasm is infectious, make sure your child catches it.

  2. Read with expression. Go ahead! Use voices. Do sound effects. Make a fool of yourself... your child will love it.

  3. Point to the pictures, and talk about them. Make them relatable: "Hey! That looks just like your toy train."

  4. Even a squirmy worm may be listening. Babies are grabby. Give them their own book to hold or something to gnaw on while you read.

  5. Hungry baby? Multitask. It's OK - and sometimes advisable - to offer snacks, nurse, or bottlefeed while reading aloud.

  6. If Mr. or Ms. Grabby Pants thwarts your best efforts, then sing, do finger plays, recite Mother Goose... And try, try again (later).

  7. Let your child turn the pages, if they can. And over time, your child will learn which end of the book is up, that the letters are the thing you are reading, that text flows from left to right...

  8. Awesome pictures. Find books that have them.

  9. Little ones love rhyming, word play and songs - provide a healthy diet of books that feature them, and see how babies gain language.

  10. Short, simple board books are great for babies. In fact, some of the best books have hardly any words at all.

  11. Make reading aloud a habit when your baby is wee. Incorporate it into your daily routine, and it may soon become a treasured part of your day.

  12. Provide variety, but be prepared for repetition. A range of books with different authors and topics is fantastic - but don't be surprised when baby wants the same beloved book over and over... and over.

  13. Books, books everywhere and lots of stuff to read. Nurture a reader: Make books an accessible part of your child's environment.

  14. When reading aloud, find a comfortable spot where you won't doze off or be overly distracted.

  15. Practice makes perfect - for the listener and the reader. The more you do it, the easier it will be.

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