Make books accessible
The first step in encouraging a love of reading is to make sure your preschooler has access to books. Having books available to them within the home is so important because it allows the child to see books as a part of their lives.
Keep books around in any space where the child spends a lot of time: their bedroom, the living room, and a play area are all great places to keep children’s books. This will encourage them to pick up a book at any time during the day.
Having books in the home is so important, but purchasing lots of new books can be expensive. Utilize the public library as a way to try new titles and decide which books to purchase for your home collection. This is a free way to see what types of books your child loves the most. The public library is also a great way to cycle new books into your home if your child tires of their traditional favorites. In addition to the library, you can purchase children’s books at a discount at thrift stores and used bookstores like Half Price Books. Often these books are in really great condition!
Make reading part of their routine
Reading should be a part of your preschooler’s everyday routine. Start with adding reading to your bedtime routine. Books are a great way for kids to wind down to sleep and it helps them connect reading to positive time with loved ones.
You can also add in reading time to other parts of their day. Keep books in the car and have your child spend time reading when you’re out and about. You can even bring books with you when you run errands or eat at restaurants to keep your child occupied. The books will keep them off screens and promote a love of reading.
Keep reading fun
For preschoolers, cultivating a love of reading means creating positive memories around books. Make sure reading stays fun and low-pressure for your preschooler.
When we talk about “reading” for preschoolers, that often means spending time looking at the pictures or having books read aloud to them. It could also mean following along with an audio track of a picture book. Most preschoolers are not reading words independently, but they can still “read the pictures.” Encourage your child to read in any way they are able and don’t focus too much on them reading the words.
Another way to keep reading fun is to allow the child to choose what books they read. Rereading books is totally appropriate and a great way for children to develop early literacy skills. They also may gain comfort from reading old favorites. Avoid telling your child that certain books are “baby books.” Let the child choose what they want to read.
Help your child create an identity as a reader
People who love reading see themselves as readers. You can help your child identify as a reader by making reading a part of their everyday lives. Keep books in the home and make them accessible to your child. Keep reading a part of your preschooler’s daily routine. And make sure to keep reading a fun, low-pressure activity so your child continues to love reading as they grow.
A high-quality preschool program in Phoenix, Arizona
Valley Child Care and Learning Centers offer a high-quality preschool program for families in the Phoenix area. Families can trust that their children are getting the best education possible, with a research-based approach to curriculum. Teachers emphasize play-based learning, using developmentally appropriate practices to support children in their growth.