… are just some of the many roles parents play.
I remember when I first learned to read. I remember when the words to my very favorite children’s book, Clotilda, started to becomes clearer and sounding them out started to become easier.
I think about my childhood often as my oldest daughter, who at three-and-a-half, is starting to remind me of myself at that age. She has learned to write the letters in her name and while she struggles with the ‘Y’ every time, when she finally does get it, the proud look on her face warms my heart. Her interest in books is getting more and more profound. She asks me every day if today is “library day” and points out the Library when we drive through town.
Where do parents begin to teach their kids to read? I think it starts with building a love for books and stories. Town libraries offer free, weekly story-times, some for babies as young as 6-months. We’ve read books before bed nearly every single night since my kids were infants (I’m a bit of a stickler for a routine). If there was ever a night that they didn’t want to read a book (rare!), my oldest would ask us to tell her a story. If we started with anything other than, ‘Once upon a time’ and ended with anything other than ‘Happily Ever After’, we were instantly corrected.
Where does new technology come in? An app is a great way to learn to read. And it’s a guilt-free excuse to let the kids use the iPad! When learning to read books, kids are dependent upon their index finger pointing to words and saying them aloud simultaneously. In most apps, this is done automatically with words highlighting or being underlined while spoken by a narrator. There are also options to turn the narration off so that your child can read alone. Other ways to introduce a love for words and letters is stenciling. Tracing is not only important for recognition, but also for muscle-memory and small-motor control.
Using the iPad as a learning tool not only allows parents to continue the use of a device that has gained popularity with their kids, but it also helps children gain necessary life skills. Reading along with the ponies from My Little Pony or the trucks like Chuck from Chuck & Friends, and reading classic books like Velveteen Rabbit and Thumbelina – these are brands that win with kids and story lines that contain popular, important messages.
Apps today make it easy to build a love of words and stories with your kids. To visit the full library of Ruckus Media Apps, please click here.