Children's Reading Resource | Pre-K - 3rd Grade | Home Reading Helper | Read Charlotte
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Get your child ready for literacy in Kindergarten through simple everyday activities and play!

Kids can learn valuable skills through small, teachable moments during a normal day. This means no grueling work sessions with flash cards, buying expensive educational toys, or completing tedious worksheets!

Experts agree that children must have repeated exposure to “pre-literacy” activities to build their skills and enable them to become successful future readers. These skills set the stage for reading:  (1) print awareness, (2) phonemic awareness, (3) vocabulary, (4) writing, and (5) oral language and comprehension.

Here are effective ways to sneak in literacy skills anywhere you go to give your child a head start for school:

Connection to Reading

Print awareness is the discovery that letters and words surround us in our daily life. Whether we are listening to our favorite book, looking at the letters in our name, or seeing a sign, print holds important meaning. Pre-K kids must also learn how to hold a book, turn pages as they read, and recognize that print goes from left to right when reading and writing.

Activities

Children's Reading Resource | Pre-K - 3rd Grade | Home Reading Helper

HOME ACTIVITIES

Read books together each day.

Bedtime for your child is a great time to wind down and listen to a story for 10 to 15 minutes. Your child will love to get your full attention!  There is no toy or game on their iPad that is better for building their pre-reading skills than sharing reading time with a caring adult.

Be Intentional & Sneak it In

Find other times during the day to share quick five minute reads, like in the car while waiting to pick up a family member or in the bleachers watching a sibling play basketball. This is a critical year for your child’s pre-reading development and it will go by fast! As author Neil Parischa says, “Slipping pages into all the cricks and corners of the day adds up.”

Be the Teacher

Let your child be the teacher and show YOU the parts of a book:  title, front cover, back cover and when to turn the pages. Empower your child to understand how to use a book by having to explain it to someone else.

Point to the Words

When reading aloud to your child point to the words with your finger along with pointing out pictures and details. Research has shown that children who had adults point to words while they read aloud to them during preschool had improved reading skills years later. This  powerful technique helps children with word recognition and future spelling.

Left to Right, Top to Bottom

It’s important your child understands that when we read, we go from left to right, then from top of the page on down to the bottom. Next time you read a book together, have your child use a small toy, such as an insect, animal or car, and move the toy across the page, from left to right, after you read a sentence. Show them how the toy is then moving from left to right, then  down the page as you read each word and sentence.

Sign up to receive free books to read

Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is a book gifting program that mails free, high-quality books to children from birth until they begin school, regardless of their family’s income.

Get your child their very own library card

Visit your local branch so your child can explore the children’s section and feel like reading is a special treat.

Pick a Winner! Find Excellent Books to Read Aloud

Favorite Books for Pre-K Children

Read a Book Online for Free

Can’t make it the library?  Using your library card number, you and your child they can visit TumbleBooks, an online collection of animated, talking picture books, or the NC Kids Digital Library to choose from hundreds of picture books that will read aloud as your child follows along.

TumbleBooks

TumbleBooks can be read by you or read to you

NC Kids Digital Library (Free, requires library card number)

Go to “Collections” and select “Read Alongs” to choose from hundreds of picture books that will read aloud as your child follows along in the story.

Observe Me

Let your child see you reading! Tell them why you enjoy reading (to relax, learn or laugh). They’ll be inspired to imitate you.

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Children's Reading Resource | Pre-K - 3rd Grade | Home Reading Helper

PRINTABLES

The best way to build print awareness is by pointing out letters and words around you. Draw your child’s attention to the letters in store signs, point out words on food labels, and notice words on fliers in the mail. Show your child that words are meaningful in our lives.

Children's Reading Resource | Pre-K - 3rd Grade | Home Reading Helper

GAMES

Read a Book Online for Free

Can’t make it the library?  Using your library card number, you and your child they can visit TumbleBooks, an online collection of animated, talking picture books, or the NC Kids Digital Library to choose from hundreds of picture books that will read aloud as your child follows along.

TumbleBooks

TumbleBooks can be read by you or read to you

NC Kids Digital Library (Free, requires library card number)

Go to “Collections” and select “Read Alongs” to choose from hundreds of picture books that will read aloud as your child follows along in the story.

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