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Read, read, read

Updated: Jan 27, 2021

Looking for things to do with your child? Read on.

Reading with your child combines the best of a number of activities. It develops a lot of of skills which will help build a developing brain.

Why is reading important? Reading with your child builds a basic skill called 'joint attention'. This is where your child can focus her attention on what you are attending to. Sounds simple, doesn't it? But it's really key to later development.

Reading also develops general attention, where your child is able to ignore noises around them, and focus for a length of period, on what you are asking them to look at.

Reading develops language skills, especially if the reader stops to point out details or ask questions.

Reading is the perfect way to develop cognitive skills and vocabulary of things we might not come across in our everyday life. For example, snow in India, wild animals or the far away galaxies. These and more can be taught in context, through books.

Reading helps to bond with your child. Reading together and then a cuddle to say 'good night' is such a good way to end the day. It helps build a routine and consistency, which creates security for a young child.

How to read? The first key point is to choose an appropriate book. There are so many books, especially English books on the market, that this is not difficult. Choose a book, depending on your child's age. A simple board book will be perfect for toddlers. Books with very simple stories, is good for the slightly older children.

First, create a calm environment to work in. Read in an interesting voice, with good inflections. Read slowly, really slowly. Children need time to process sentences. Stop to point out interesting details. Stop to ask questions, but not too often. Try and finish before the child loses interest. It's OK to not actually finish the story in one sitting. What is important is that your child enjoyed your time together and looks forward to another session of it.

Can you do anything other than read? India has a long tradition of stories that have been handed down generations. You can do this with your child, without needing a book to support you. Jut tell your child a story. She will love watching your expressions and hearing the emotions in your voice. The advantage with using a book though is that the pictures help support comprehension. This means that if the child does not fully understand what you are saying, she will still be able to work it out using the pictures. Books are also easier to use with younger children, because again, the art work supports attention and comprehension.

Once you build reading into your daily routine, both you and your child will look forward to it. Why not give it a go today?

And have you tried our 'Brainy Bug - Making English Easy' app? With hundreds of words and sentences, our app is designed to make English easy for your child.

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Divya Thomas
Divya Thomas
May 29, 2020

Some excellent ideas and activities for families with young children.

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