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Build Reading and Listening Skills

Listening to stories helps build your child’s ability pay attention in school, discriminate speech, understand spoken language, and develop skills essential for learning to read.

Bed-time stories – ages one to eight years – Does your child have trouble winding down to go to sleep? A simple and wonderful way to quiet your child down and prepare for sleep is to read stories before bed. It doesn’t matter what the stories are. Many very young children love to hear the same storybook over and over, that is just fine. Try to make a habit of 15 or more minutes a day of “quiet time” before bed in which your child selects a book and you read it together. • Start by reading a favorite bed-time book to your child each night for about 15 minutes as you sit together on the bed. You can read and your child listen • Ages 1 – 2 years – many books will be picture books – just enjoy naming the cars or animals on each page with your child. Cloth books are especially nice for toddlers. • At about 18 months to 2 years ask your child to point to pictures themselves, if you read a story, point to key written words as you read • Ages 2 – 3 years – Move to story books and begin telling the story together – as your child starts to memorize the book let your child alternate by telling part of the story • Ages 3 – 4 years – Point to important words from the story that are written on the page as you read – see if your child can find that word later • Ages 5 – 6 years – Alternate pages to be read aloud with your child. You can use books from school or favorite bed-time story books but let your child read with you.

  • • Ages 7 – 8 – Let your child read the book all by herself, or make it a family bed-time activity in which an older child reads a bed-time story to a younger child

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