One of the most important experiences we can give children at an early age is the gift of reading. Here aremy top tips to encourage your little bookworms!

1. Have lots of books at home – children are encouraged to look at books and start reading if you have a variety of exciting books for them to pick up and ‘read’.

2. Let your child see you reading too! Your child’s involvement and enthusiasm will be encouraged by seeing that you enjoy reading.

3. Make reading a pleasure – snuggle up together and read with your child. Make sure it is a special time together and one that your child will look forward to.

4. Allow your child to choose the books they love – it can be any genre: non-fiction, fiction including poetry, picture books, magazines/comics. This all develops the child’s love of reading and encourages a wide vocabulary.

5. Have fun while reading books together – use different voices for characters and be interactive.

6. Visit your local library – this is a great way to try different books and discover new authors they love. Libraries also have wonderful holiday activities, which can really stimulate your child’s imagination.

7. Discuss stories or books together and, if you can, take part in follow-up activities, for example, draw a character from the story, encourage role play and dressing up.
8. Ask questions about the stories/books to develop your child’s understanding and thinking skills, for example, ask your child to predict what might happen next.

9. Read as much as you can – don’t worry if your child has a favourite book they want to look at or read again and again. This is all part of the learning process and helps develop fluency and confidence.

10. Read wherever you are – if you are waiting at the doctor’s surgery or reading signposts in town, this all develops the knowledge that reading is important
and fun.