Reading is Something Magical
There’s something magical about bringing a book to the children and having a whole other world come alive in their eyes. I frequently read to the children. It’s something I do most often. I’ve always been a huge advocate of reading to children, even infants. There was a book that both of my girls fell in love with when they were little. It was a bath time book with many different babies from different cultures having bath time and fun cuddles with Mommy and Daddy, a simple cardboard 5-page book and my kids loved it! The end of the book said, ”Gently gently comb your hair, tickle tickle everywhere!” My children used to go crazy when I would tickle them just as we were finishing the book and before bed. To this day my girls quote the book whenever we’re getting our hair done. I step back and think “Wow. Something so silly was so magical for them”. My girls are almost 18 years and 16 years old. They still remember their favorite bedtime book from when they were 3 and 5!
A Print Rich Environment
We read books every day at preschool and try to create a print-rich environment. We try to label everything so that sight words become part of their everyday life. It’s not enough to have them master upper and lowercase letters, that’s just an introduction. So, the whole point of this is to open up a whole new world of learning and exploration.
Any book you read can be a learning experience
I spend a lot of time on stage and with every book, I do different voices. We make sound effects to go with the book. The kids love it! Every chance they get they asked when I’m going to read to them again. What an honor that is to be asked by a little person to read them a book. There have been times, even on the playground, children have asked me to go get the book we read together yesterday afternoon. It just hurts my heart so strongly that you’re going to stop playing with your friends so that we can share time and read a book together.
I even use books as behavioral redirection. Let’s say it’s one of those crazy days where there’s possibly a full moon and everything’s gone wrong and teachers feel crazy and children are spinning out of control… sometimes preschool creates The Perfect Storm. Instead of using an outdoor voice indoors trying to get everyone’s attention, I will just simply sit on the carpet with a stack of books and start reading. I call this technique Feeding the Ducks. If I sit down on the carpet and start reading eventually almost every single child will come over and one by one become a part of the group. This gives my teachers a break and lets them regroup. It gives the children a brain break and allows them to redirect some of that pin-up energy.
Books are some of our most important tools for teaching
They help land a new concept, help teachers regroup, and take children to new worlds and new places in their imaginations. Books are nothing short of magic in the mind of a child. I don’t think it can be overstated: Books are important!
Teaching a child to read is one of the best gifts you can give a person. So by reading to children we show them how valuable reading and books can be. I honestly couldn’t do preschool without books. I encourage parents- go to the local library to get a membership and check out a book. This one act can change your relationship with your child and your child’s relationship with the world.
Thanks for stopping by,