Raising a Reader

Ever wonder how to raise a reader? The NY Times has put together a great section on reading, and literacy skills for the littlest readers! So just what are some of our SLP's favorite tricks that help foster a lifelong love of reading? Below are just a few of the top reading tips and tricks we teach our families during our sessions:

  photo from NY Times

photo from NY Times

1. Read early and read often! Make reading a part of your daily routine, even before your child engages in reading activities. 

2. Make reading fun. Involve the senses, when children are little let them feel (or even taste) the pages. Talk about what they are seeing - go beyond the words on the page.

3. Make it special. Have reading time be a special time between you and your child. Create a cozy nook in your house, snuggle on the couch, or lie on the floor. Making it a special time, will make your child love book time.

4. Let your child drive. Children often hit a stage where they want to hold the book, or turn the pages. Many parents become frustrated because it makes it hard to read the words. Skip the words, and comment on what the child is doing. Just playing and looking at books is building early literacy skills.

5. Expand! Choose books that your child might not be familiar with. Introduce them to new ideas, characters or concepts (e.g. islands, dragons, feelings, other countries, etc.) - allow them to learn through the pages of a book. In addition, add onto vocabulary, talk beyond the text, and relate the book back to you/your child's life.

For more information on children's books, and reading, check out the NY Times Book feature - we love the resources available for families on this site.

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Jody Vaynshtok

Jody is a California-licensed speech language pathologist with eight years of industry and clinical experience. She has worked with both adult and pediatric populations during her time at private practice, birth-to-three, and hospital facilities. She is experienced in the assessment and treatment of a variety of communication and cognitive disorders. In addition, Jody has a passion for working with adults looking to achieve clearer communication. Jody received her BS in Speech and Hearing Sciences and MS in Medical Speech-Language Pathology from the University of Washington. She was a part of the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford’s cleft and craniofacial clinic participating in the multidisciplinary assessment and treatment of children born with craniofacial abnormalities. She holds a staff position at UCSF and is the lead speech language pathologist for the department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery’s Hearing Loss Clinic. When she's not busy having fun with her clients Jody enjoys spending time with her husband, Anton, friends and family. And if she's not headed out somewhere fun for dinner, you might find her at Bar Method working out!