Affirming Ethnicities

Affirming Ethnicities Reading out loud to children has multiple benefits. One is the opportunity to bring stories of peoples and cultures that are outside of the children’s own everyday experience. Broadening horizons is good for everyone, young and old alike. That kind of breadth may be especially important, however, to a child who is him/herself from a bicultural or minority cultural background. As the diversity of our American population increases, many will learn something of their own heritage primarily from books. Adopted children, children of immigrants, children of bicultural marriages: whatever the source of their...

All Together Now: Bedtime Reading for Multiple Ages

All Together Now: Bedtime Reading for Multiple Ages The best thing I did for my three children was read to them at bedtime, religiously. The second best thing was read to all three at the same time, despite significant differences in age and personality. Brother was four when his identical twin sisters were born. Group reading was made easier by the fact that the twins never knew it any other way. For the first three years, their bedtime was earlier than their brother’s. I read toddler books to them for a bit, followed by a lullaby. After they fell asleep, my son and I would read older children’s books of his choice: science, animals, astronomy,...

Learning How to Read to Your Baby

Learning How to Read to Your Baby Reading to young infants is not a skill that comes naturally to everyone. What counts most in becoming a book-mommy/daddy is sharing books together as early as possible and then improving through practice. Here are some tips to help you on that learning curve. Begin as soon as Baby is old enough to sit on your lap and focus on something other than your face. At first you choose the book, but before long offer a few choices and let Baby indicate his/her interest, whether by grabbing or smiling or even chewing. From an early age individual children may show a preference in book type, just as older...

Getting Your Child Ready for Kindergarten

Getting Your Child Ready for Kindergarten Even though the August/September start date is a long way off, I want to chat about this a bit.  It is a big worry for some parents, especially as that big separation approaches. These might be some of your questions and/or fears: “Should I invest in a program to teach my toddler/pre-schooler to learn to read?” “Can my baby learn to ready from the program I’ve seen on television?” “Does my 4-year-old need a reading tutor?” “All of the moms I know are doing the things listed above.  Am I off base if we mostly play, read, and snuggle?” All excellent...

Everyone Loves a Good Mystery

Everyone Loves a Good Mystery I read plenty of mysteries as a kid.  Nancy Drew was so much more exciting than my every-day life.  But I wasn’t cut out to be a detective in the traditional sense. You’ve got to have a stick-to-it-ive-ness.  After reading Harriet the Spy, I kept an observation journal.  That lasted a day – maybe two, before I gave up. Nothing interesting was happening. My parents and my siblings and I spied on our neighbors who were constantly getting in trouble with the cops, but the excitement was short-lived, as we saw what it was doing to their kids.  I love uncovering answers at work, though,...

Doodle Away!

Doodle Away! I love doodling. It’s art without judgement and anyone can do it. You don’t need a degree, just need a writing utensil and your imagination. And kids are fantastic at it. These books are a great jumping off point for your budding artist. Cut out some pages and hang them on your fridge.  Or have them professionally matted and framed and hang them in your child’s room.  If you want to go all out -Put them up in a hallway and host an art opening for your artist.  What a great way to show your child that you value creativity – even in one of its smallest and least appreciated...

« Previous Entries