Introducing Children to Reading

Chiquita Patrizi, spokesperson for Prima Toys encourages parents to start introducing children to reading and literacy from an early age.

Reading is a vital part of life. From an early age we read at school, we read as teenagers for entertainment and as adults we read to acquire knowledge and information and like me, to be transported to new worlds by amazing characters.

But what about the little ones, children who are not yet at school? Education and learning brand LeapFrog continues to do research in the field of literacy and they have discovered that literacy skills begin to develop at birth, and these skills need to be fostered.

While each child’s developmental journey has its own pace, as a parent you can encourage the progression of important skills through activities that are fun and engaging.  And chances are, you and your child already engage in some of these activities!

Below are some fun ways that parents can encourage literacy skills in their children:

Sing the alphabet song. This will introduce your child to the alphabet and allows him to distinguish one letter from the next. LeapFrog has a number of toys, including the Lettersaurus, a dinosaur that sings the alphabet song, that encourage children to learn as they play.

Play with sounds by introducing nursery rhymes and sing-a-long games. Repetition is a wonderful way of learning about words, how they fit together and which words sound the same.

Go on a treasure hunt. Help your child search for items in your home that rhyme, or start with the same sound.

Enjoy the rhythm of music. Clap or dance to the beat, and even make up your own funny or non-sense lyrics. Music provides plenty of natural opportunities for children to appreciate and manipulate the sounds of language.

Repeat the names of objects and teach colours. Increasing a child’s vocabulary helps her to better express herself using words.

Introduce your child to words and reading in a fun way. Point to words on cereal boxes, milk cartons and other everyday objects that have words on them. This will help your child identify and recognise everyday words such as “milk”. The LeapReader Junior for ages 1 to 3 years is a great way to introduce your child to different words.

Whichever way you encourage your child to read, ensure that you both have fun!

For more information go to www.facebook.com/PrimaToys