10 tips to get your toddler loving reading
There are some simple and effective ways to encourage your toddler to get your toddler to enjoy reading, says Ruth Duncan, research and marketing expert for Tidy Books.
1. Share a book every day, but not for long
Read with your toddler and make sharing a book a natural part of your day, every day. Toddlers have a shorter attention span than babies, so read little and often. Don't feel you have to finish a book. Simply come back to it another time.
2. Read a book anywhere and everywhere
Bedtime stories are a lovely way to end the day. Why not also try story time in the bath, on the bus, just after lunch, or just for fun?
3. Get up, dance and jump about to read!
Toddlers need to move! If they're not sitting still, don't worry, they are still listening to you. Choose books that invite your toddler to wriggle like a snake or clap their hands.
4. Recite rhymes, sing songs and put on silly voices
Don't be afraid! Funny voices, rhymes and silly songs all help your toddler to grow their vocabulary. If you're both having fun, then your toddler will associate books with pleasure. Pause every now and then to let your toddler enjoy finishing off a familiar rhyme.
5. Get hands on
Books with flaps to lift and pull keep little hands busy. Point to the pictures as you read the story, and encourage your toddler to turn the pages. Most parents prefer print books rather than e-books for young children as print books engage all of the senses; touch and smell too!
6. Start your toddler's home library
Have a good selection of books at home that are age-appropriate for your toddler. You can find great book ideas from Bookstart.org.uk
7. Give a book (or two) as gifts
By giving your toddler books for birthdays and other celebrations you're showing them that books are special, and it's a great way to build up their home library.
8. Make an outing to your local library
Find lots of good books in your library, and it's free! Your toddler will love being able to browse through a big selection, and there's often storytime so you can relax for a bit!
9. Make it easy for your toddler to find the book they want
There's nothing sweeter than seeing your toddler picking out and 'reading' a book by themselves. Put books within easy reach of your toddler so that they feel that books are theirs to choose. Toddlers need to see books' front covers to find the one they want.
10. Again! Again!
Be prepared to read the same story over and over. You can be proud: Your toddler loves books and will be all set for school!