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Reading Aloud with Young Children: 5 tips for an enriching family storytime

Updated: Jan 28, 2022


It is no secret that daily life with young children can feel like an Olympic sport! Our days are filled to the brim with beautiful chaos and task lists but pausing to make space in the day for reading with our children provides a moment of calm, of togetherness, and supports incredible development in our little ones.

By reading with our children every day we are supporting the development of their early literacy skills as they begin to understand sounds, words and concepts. They gain an insight into the world around them and cultures across the globe. Communication skills flourish, focus is enhanced, their sense of imagination and curiosity bloom, the list goes on!

Reading with our children is also a wonderful time to connect, cuddle, and enjoy the world of literacy together. Here are a few of my favorite tips to enrich your daily read-aloud, enjoy!


Tip #1 - Read Together


Storytime does not have to be a one-person show, instead, involve your child by asking them for their participation. Making sounds for each of the animals, putting a particular hand motion with the dialogue, asking them to repeat a known pattern, or helping turn the pages can be fun and engaging ways to help children feel more connected to the book.


Tip #2 - Find Your Inner Actor


Understanding the difference between different characters and multiple ideas starts with the fun of using different voices as you read. This is a time to be silly and creative! As children get to know a story they may enjoy giving their own voice to a character.

"Changes in pitch often help readers understand where different ideas begin and end." – Steve Peha

Tip #3 - Use Props


Ask your child to help gather props then have fun using them together to make the story come alive! Finger puppets, food items mentioned in the book, a hat, etc. are ways to use realia to help children connect their world with literacy and increase their engagement during storytime.


Tip #4 - Set a Routine


Find a time that works for your family to dedicate to reading together. Making reading part of your daily routine will allow you to take your time to enjoy the story and emphasizes the importance of reading.


Tip #5 - Shake It Up


The same book is requested over and over again? Shake it up and give the story a twist, say a line incorrectly, or use a different name for a character and see if your little one catches you. This is an opportunity to have your child correct you or make up their own twist!


Happy Reading!


Storytime can be one of the most magical parts of our day and does not have to be a source of stress. I hope you and your little one find time to curl up with a great book and dive in for some fun with these 5 tips today! Leave a comment below with some of your favorite tips, tricks, and books for a great storytime!

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