Reading and Music

Books, Reading and Storytelling

Reading helps your child develop concentration and attention while giving a good example of correct language. Reading is also an activity that allows you to spend time together.

What to do with the book:

  • Choose a quiet time and place where you won’t be interrupted.
  • Let your child choose a book that is interesting to him/her.  This will help keep your child’s attention for a longer period of time.
  • You don’t have to read the words – watch your child’s eyes and talk about the pictures you are looking at, make up stories.
  • Read with lots of expression in your voice to keep your child interested.
  • Don’t worry about keeping the book looking new – a worn book means it has been enjoyed!
  • Don’t worry if your child can’t sit through an entire book.  The more practice they get, the longer their attention span for stories. Follow your child’s lead.
  • Story time should be a fun activity and should never be stressful for you or your child.  Stop reading when your child is no longer able to pay attention, is distracted or is no longer having fun. Try again at another time in your day.

You can find many free or inexpensive books at any of the following locations:

  • public libraries
  • garage sales
  • “dollar” stores
  • bargain sections of bookstores
  • trade with neighbours
  • make your own book! Find ideas on how to make your own books online, use family photos and more.

Music

Music makes learning language easy and fun. It can be done anywhere – in the car/bus, in the bath, at the grocery store. Music encourages turn taking, talking and moving, listening and following directions.

Choosing music:

  • Any music is good; however children often like songs which contain children’s themes.
  • Borrow CDs from a public library or toy and resource library to see how well your child enjoys them before buying.
  • Listen to music together with your child.
  • Some community centres and libraries have special music programs you can attend with your child.
  • Singing is often better than taped music because you can go at your child’s pace, change the words, practice taking turns and filling in words.
  • Good songs have a lot of repetition (i.e. Row, row, row your boat) and actions that match the words (i.e. put your right foot in…). This gives your child the chance to participate!
  • Repeat the same songs often.  If your child is smiling, laughing and having fun, repeat the song until they no longer look interested.  Each time you repeat the song, it gives your child the chance to participate a little more!