I am excited to collaborate with a group of final year students from the Wee Kim Wee School of Communications and Information to spread their ‘Read To Me’ Campaign 2018. In this post, I share my personal experience of how my children grew in love with reading and how you can participate in this campaign giveaway. Our goal is to spread awareness on the importance of reading to our children from young.
About Read to Me:
Read to me is a communications campaign proudly brought to you by a group of final year students from the Wee Kim Wee School of Communications and Information.
Early shared reading experiences provide multi-fold benefits for a child’s development. They are here to share related resources, book events and tips for parents to read to your little ones.
If there is one thing that I can really be proud of doing ‘successfully’ as a parent, it will be this.
Instill a love for reading in my kids.
I am often asked, ‘How do you get all 3 kids to love reading?’, ‘What books do they read?’, ‘How is it that they are able to read for 3-4 hours in the library/bookstore?’, ‘He can read at such a young age?’
Basically, my eldest was reading quite well at age 4. I had discovered by chance when he read aloud the whole lady bird book on Jack and the beanstalk. It was startling as he had refused to utter out any words to me during our reading times together which I respected. My second and third child started reading by a year later which I was not worried as I knew with the basic curriculum we had, they will be able to read well eventually. I will share this key to reading at the end of this post.
This is not a bragging right as I know of kids who read earlier. For kids who learn to read at a later stage, it does not matter as they are still capable of catching up very quickly. I think the important idea is to
Spark a love for reading from young regardless of which age they can read.
How to spark a love for reading?
Read everywhere, anywhere, anytime!
I read aloud to them from birth. For a start, I read simple board books to all my babies on a daily basis. I surround them with books and read to them day and night. I ensure each child always has a book at hand to occupy with well illustrated picture word books. When I cook, a book is there on the high chair, when out in a queue or an event, they have a good book to enjoy. Books became a daily affair as when they are not playing or studying, they are reading.
Make reading fun and enjoyable!
In my 2014 post on Kids Lovin it, I shared the details of the Dos and Don’ts of reading and the list of early reading picture books I used. Another refreshing way to inspire reading is through an Outdoor Book-picnicking session. Once it rained on the planned day of outdoor book picnicking and my girl was disappointed. I decided to create an impromptu indoor book picnic using my wilting flowers. we had the most delightful book tea picnic!
Make books accessible
Having an easy-to-access book shelf area/corner allows even young toddlers to grab a book on his own. I DIY-ed a front bookshelf with our baby cot bar and rotated books for an invitation to read.
For early readers, a well illustrated picture book empowers their fertile minds
Visual literacy is a key for early readers to love books. Do not underestimate the power of a picture book. A well chosen book with great illustration empowers the child to ‘read’ visually. It also ignites the imagination for a clear comprehension of the story and provides a great place for story telling. As I read aloud using picture books, the child can recall the story while flipping through the pages of the illustration. I recalled how my eldest at 2yo, could sit through alone quietly flipping through and ‘reading’ the picture books all by himself while I take a shower every evening. The times spent reading aloud to him and exposing him to different types of picture books captured his imagination and increased his attention span.
My eldest even wanted a Bear Hunt, Book Hunt Party for his 7th birthday in which I used ‘We’re going on a bear hunt’ as an ice breaker.
Make reading a daily routine
On hindsight, here is a key factor that contributed to the kids’ love for reading – Once any child awakes in the morning, the first thing they have to do is to silent read the bible for 10mins. Thereafter, they choose a book to read until mum-me here is ready from my own devotional reading and they can start their basic routine of washing up. As a Stay-At-Home-Mum in the past, this routine set had grounded them firmly in the habit of reading. It was a win-win situation where regardless of what time the kids wake up, they are engrossed in their storybooks while I do my own thing or could even afford to have more sleep-in time! Kids also love our before bedtime readings.
With such a daily habit of reading, it was a natural process where my second and third child followed kor kor’s reading model. In ‘How to help my kid’s restless feet, itchy fingers and wandering mind’, I share on how reading to them chapter books as young as 4yo, helped build their language and love for reading.
Visit the library and bookshops regularly
Lastly, we visit the library at least once a fortnight to update new books. The library and bookshops are our favourite haunt. I try to scan through all the books they read to ensure wholesome literature are borrowed. Currently, the boys’ favourite series is The Mysterious Benedict Society while my girl adores Nancy Clancy and Amelia Bedelia chapter books. For information on reading of Chinese books, check my posts on 1)Our Favourite Chinese Picture Books and I have re-ignited my read-aloud sessions with each child using a chinese chapter book. – 2)Chinese Chapter Books and Comic Books
Follow a good reading program
Lastly, I followed a ‘How to Read’ program by Valerie Bendt. Using her program is simple. I just print out the lessons for the day and go through with my child. By the end of 60 over lessons, they are reading very well. I did not complete the 108 lessons! When my no.2 and 3 was unable to read as well as korkor, I was not worried. I simply continued patiently this program with them amidst all that I did the abovementioned routine. They did not have much disparity in reading even though they can read later. (Thanks to) Pam, a friend whose kids can read at 3 yo, had recommended Teach your child to read in 100 easy lessons.
Having a good program to learn is useful in boosting confidence to read. However, such a program will not develop a good ‘relationship‘ with reading. I know of young kids who can read but dislike reading or show little interest in books. May I encourage you to take reading to a deeper level for yourself and your child. May your child
develop the joy and delight of reading for its own sake
More tips on reading to your child (by Read To Me) :
- Choose a book that you know you will enjoy.
- Choose a book written in rhyme. When you follow the rhythm, it is less tedious. Rhyming books can help your child to predict what words come next, even if he/she cannot read. They can use the pictures to guess the context to guess the word and that builds reading confidence!
- Have book-related snacks to build routine. This is especially helpful if your child is not used to story time yet. Snacks and stories are comforting so they go well together!
- It’s okay to read books over and over again. It is great if your child knows what he or she wants and there is a reason why they go back to those books. Some stories that appeal to human nature is lasting and timeless. Reading books over and over again also help with their sight-reading.
- Have a corner for extension activities. Books speak to us and give us ideas. It will be great if your child can have an outlet to express what he or she is feeling.
- Reading to children doesn’t have to be calm all the time. They can be moving around and it can be wild and crazy and it is fine! Sometimes your child internalise the story through actions. Just keep going through it!
- Be comfortable with picture books. Create your own stories together with picture books. Set up characters, plot and conflict out of your own imagination.
- Talk about your feelings. Literature is the safest way to talk about feelings and emotions that comes with life events like welcoming another sibling, going to a new school environment or even dealing with the death of a loved one. It is easier for a child to talk about what a character is going through than what he or she is going through. Questions like “How do you think this character is feeling? Have you ever felt this way?” goes a long way in helping children develop social and emotional learning skills.
Pls help us SHARE this Campaign on your social Media!
Winners will walk away with either
1) Preschool Market Toyish Playset worth $45.90
(photo credit: Preschoolmarketplace)
Toyish set is an exciting way to extend your reading through art and play! You can get your child to imagine a book character or even create their own ending for a story they wish to end differently! It can also be a catalyst for creation of your own story-telling opportunities. The possibilities are endless!
2)Book Set : The Empty Pot and Mabel moves to Singapore
Read the review of The empty pot at Easy Science for kids.
Mabel moves to Singapore
Mabel the penguin and her family are moving abroad! Find out what happens when they move from their cool Antarctic continent to warm, sunny and humid Singapore with its vibrant architecture, cultures and more. Experience the excitement of new journeys and the delight of new friendships that comes with a change of environment and a new phase of life. (by XM Final Year Student)
Steps to join giveaway and help share this blog post on Read to Me Campaign :
(This is only for Singapore residents)
- Like GrowingHearts123 facebook page
- Like ReadtoMeSg facebook page
- Like Preschool Marketplace’s Facebook Page
- Leave a comment on my FACEBOOK POST on
- what is your favourite thing about reading to your kid?
- indicate which Giveaway (1/2) you wish to win. Please include your e-mail address so that we can contact you.
- Bonus Point: Share this post and tag 2 or more friends on your facebook (tag GrowingHearts and set it public)
- Giveaway ENDS 2359 on 26 MARCH 2018
———–GIVEAWAY HAS ENDED————–
The Winners are
Option 1: Yuebo Yu
Option 2: Kelly Yee
CONGRATULATIONS! Thank You ALL for joining this giveaway!
Note: Winner will be selected at random. The team will contact the reader directly via e-mail by 31st March. Winners have to respond within 24 hours upon announcement made and collect the prize by 15th April 2017 or forfeit the prize to another winner.
Disclaimer: The final year students from the Wee Kim Wee School of Communications and Information have collaborated with the above organisers to sponsor this Giveaway. This is not a blog review of their products. It is an effort to increase awareness for this Read to Me Campaign that they are hosting. Blogger has not received any products nor monetary benefits for this post.
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