Raising a Reader: Tips for Parents

Austin's Best Early Childhood Education - Stepping Stone SchoolHow can you help your child be ready to read and ready to learn?

  • Talk to your infant and toddler to help him learn to speak and understand the meaning of words.  Point to objects that are near and describe them as you play and do daily activities together. Having a large vocabulary gives a child a great start when entering school.
  • Read to your baby every day starting at 6 months or earlier. Reading and playing with books is a wonderful way to spend special time with her. Hearing words over and over helps her become familiar with them. Reading to your baby is one of the best ways to help her learn.
  • Use sounds, songs, gestures and words that rhyme to help your baby learn about language and its uses. Babies need to hear language from a human being. Television is just noise to a baby.
  • Take children’s books and writing materials when leaving home. This gives your child fun activities to entertain him while traveling or going to appointments.
  • Create a quiet, special place in your home for your child to read, write and draw. Keep books and other reading materials where your child can easily reach them.
  • Help your child see that reading is important, by your reading of books, newspapers and magazines.
  • Limit the amount and type of television or screen time you and your child use. Better yet, turn off the television and spend more time cuddling and reading books together. The time and attention you give your child has many benefits beyond helping him be ready for school success.
  • Reach out to libraries and community organizations to help you:
    • find age-appropriate books to use at home;
    • show you creative ways to use books with your child and tips to help her learn; and
    • provide year-round children’s reading and educational activities.
  • Cherish these experiences and opportunities together.


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