Research has shown that one of the most important things a parent can do to help a child learn language, prevent learning problems in school and ensure academic success is to read to them starting from an early age. Here's some tips for reading with your kids:
1. Make it a habit. I read to my girls every day. We do it for 20 minutes and I let them choose one or two books. (Some parents prefer only to read when the kids are going to bed but I do it at different times of the day so my kids will get the message that reading is an important daily activity.)
2. Let them choose books on subjects they like. I take the girls about once every two weeks to the bookstore (there are so many great places now in Kuwait to buy books for kids. Check the Kuwait Moms Guide 2013 for a full list of bookshops in the directory section). Children get more excited about reading if you give them ownership over what they read.
3. Reading helps children develop concentration, vocabulary and empathy. Model the behavior you want your children to repeat by reading often yourself.
4. Use reading to reinforce words, concepts and ideas they are learning in school. I recently got the Giving Tree from the used English bookshop in Salmiya, Q8 Books (at Bayt Lothan) which is great for reinforcing 'and', 'the', 'she' and 'was'. Its also a lovely story about love, sharing and generosity.
5. Ask your child afterwards questions about the story. What did they like about it? What happened in the story? Can they repeat the beginning, middle and end? Learning to analyze and summarize story is a key aspect of academic learning and helping them start to think of books as stories they can think about is a great way to build their confidence and reading comprehension.
SpectraWide is located in Salmiya in the same shopping building as Mothercare, Boots and Chicken Tikka next to Sultan Center. The bookstore is upstairs and is open Saturday - Thursday 10am to 2pm & 4pm to 10pm. and Fridays 2pm to 10pm. Telephone: 5054-4244 or 5054-4344.