5 Perfect Summer Books for Preschoolers

Mother reading to preschooler and infant
Photo sean dreilinger|CC

Grab some new books this summer and check out our tips for supporting your preschooler’s developing literacy skills!

5 Great Summer Books to Read Together

The Watermelon Seed

by Greg Pizzoli

Won the 2014 Theodor Seuss Geisel Award for the most distinguished beginning reader book.

Just One More

by Jennifer Hansen Rolli

One of the best new picture books of 2014, Ruby is a little girl who always wants "just one more".

The Pout-Pout Fish (A Pout-Pout Fish Adventure, 1)

by Deborah Diesen, Daniel X. Hanna

The Pout-Pout fish is "spreading his dreary-wearies all over the place". A fun read about emotions.

Dragons Love Tacos

by Adam Rubin, Daniel Salmieri

Kids (and Dragons) love Tacos....but watch out for the spicy salsa!

Should I Share My Ice Cream?-An Elephant and Piggie Book

by Mo Willems

An Elephant struggles with sharing, and learns an important lesson in the process.

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Reading Strategies To Support Preschool Literacy

Keep reading lively with these 11 tips for parents of preschoolers. Learn new reading strategies to support and open up the wonderful world of literacy to your child.

1. Name everything you see.

Build your child’s vocabulary by naming interesting objects and using new words. For example, “Look at that banana slug! A slug is like a snail without a shell. Why do you think it’s called a banana slug?”

2. Read together every day.

The most important way parents can improve literacy skills is by daily reading. Make this a special time, not a chore, that the two of you can enjoy together.

3. Model how much you enjoy reading.

Read for your own pleasure and let your children see that it is a priority for you. Try saying,  “Reading is important to Mommy, and when I’m finished this chapter of my book, I’ll read to you. Why don’t you look at the pictures in your book next to me until I’m ready?” Tell your child how much you enjoy reading with him or her.

4. Read with fun in your voice.

Preschooler reading on bed with stuffed animals
Photo John-Morgan|CC

Use humor and expression when reading to your child. Try different voices, emotions, and gestures. Entertain your child!

5. Know when to put the book away.

Stop reading for a while if your child loses interest or is having difficulty paying attention. Never force reading. Remember the ultimate goal isn’t solely to develop literacy skills, but equally important is to cultivate a life-long love of reading.

6. Visit the library.

Take your child to the library, and let them pick out their own books. Make your outing an adventure!

7. Be engaging and instructive.

Discuss what’s happening in the book and ask questions. Reading comprehension is about developing a deep understanding of language. Try asking, “How do you think that character feels? What do you think will happen next?”

8. Read it again and again.

Indulge you child and read their favorite book for the 100th time! Repetition is a fabulous learning tool.

9. Talk about the words on the page.

Infant looking at book
Photo Protopito goes to Beijing|CC

Mention to your child how we read from left to right and how words are separated by spaces. Use your reading finger to show your child where you are at in the text.

10. Point out print everywhere.

Talk about the written words you see in the world around you. Play a game to find a new word on each outing.

11. Look for red flags and be patient.

Talk to your child’s pediatrician or teacher if you ever have concerns about your child’s hearing, sight, or language development. All children develop literacy skills at their own pace, so respect the pace of your individual child. Some of the worlds brightest minds are actually late readers!
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