It is amazing when people find out you are a children's writer the way they open up and ask for tips and suggestions.I was at the bank the other day and the Assistant Bank Manager asked me for ideas to help start her toddler on the path to reading. I must admit, I was a little caught off guard, but I gave her suggestions off the top of my head.
First off, I believe it is never too early to start buying your children books! Begin with the little baby plastic ones--you know, the ones they love to slobber and chew on! Then graduate them up to the colorful board books. These are simple books that will begin to get them interested. Read these with them. My young niece knows hers so well she "pretends" to read them to you. In truth, she has them memorized. This is okay! Eventually this memorization trick will help her to recognize what the words actually mean.
Start your child off on educational computer software or apps. Programs that let them learn their letters, simple words, and sentence structure. These are key. They think they are playing games, you know they are learning! It is a win-win situation. Remember, it is never too early to start. My daughter started on the computer about the age of two. I haven't gotten her off since.
I love educational stores. There is a multitude of products to help you from simple books, preschool learning material, games, flash cards, and more! This is a wonderful avenue for finding early learning tools.
I love Post-Its! Put up brightly colored ones labeling different items in your home. Make some words easy, but don't neglect the hard words too--i.e. refrigerator. Kids have an excellent capacity to learn, don't underestimate it!
Ultimately, make this a fun experience for them. Help them to learn without making it a chore. You will be amazed at their desire to absorb everything, especially if it is presented in an innovative way!
Most of all, read to them! Set aside story time each day. Not only will you provide them an excellent learning opportunity, but you will be fostering a bond and cherished memories that will last a lifetime.
As always, wishing you all a little adventure,
K. Lamb Author of the Dani P. Mystery series
It's the adventures of Dani P. Join her in her mysteries!