All library locations will be closed on Monday, September 1st for the Labor Day holiday. The Main Library and the Brookfield, Eastmont, Piedmont Avenue and Golden Gate branches will be open on Tuesday, September 2nd. All other library locations will be closed that day.
Help Your Preschooler Get Ready to Read
Reading to your children helps them become good readers and succeed in school. Here's how to help:
Read to your child as much as possible, at least 20 minutes a day.
- Be a reader, and have lots of reading material in your house.
- Choose books you and your child will enjoy.
- Find a quiet, cozy place away from other distractions such as TV.
- Let your child look at the book and ask questions before reading.
- Act out feelings as you read: sad, happy, silly, etc. It gets easier the more you do it!
- Ask questions about the story and invite your child to ask them, too.
- Read the same book again and again if your child wants to.
- Visit the library as a family at least once a month and take your child to story times as often as possible.
Some activities that support reading:
Listening, speaking, reading, and writing are connected. Here are some suggestions that will help your children develop these skills.
Talk with your children often: you are teaching them new words. For example:
- Describe an orange as you peel it: "This orange is round, shiny, juicy; it's a citrus fruit; the peel is thick."
Ask your children questions: you are teaching them to think. For example:
- "What did the ladybug say in the story?"
- "What did you have for a snack today?"
Play word games with your children: you are teaching them that words are fun. For example:
- "I'm thinking of a big pig! It's a big pig wearing a wig! The big pig's wig looks like a fig!"
- "Willaby, wallaby, wee, an elephant sat on me. Willaby, wallaby, woo, I don't know what to do."
- "Nicky, nicky, bo-bicky, banana-fana fo-ficky, me, my, mo micky, Nicky." This is a traditional rhyme, where you put your name in place of "Nicky," then make the rest rhyme: Emma, emma, bo-bemma, banana-fana fo-femma, Emma."
Point out words and letters you see every day: you are teaching your children to recognize words in the environment. For example:
- "I see the word milk right here!" "Look, there is the exit."
- "Mmm, milk starts with M." "There's a B sound in baby. (or bat, or bubble)" "There's a T sound in cat, out, boot."
Write stories with your children: you are teaching them that they can create a story with words, and that stories can change or grow. For example:
- Write your child's words, then let him or her illustrate the story
- Kids sometimes like to act out a story, with dress-up clothes or with dolls or action figures. Ask them if they'd like to write it down.
Most importantly: have fun!