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8 Tips for Reading Aloud to Your Toddler

Reading aloud is one of the most important ways to help your child’s communication and language skills grow and develop. In fact, reading aloud helps support your child’s talking, listening, and attention skills. It also sets a foundation of reading for many years to come!

How you read to your child will change over time as they grow. Here are six tips for reading aloud to your toddler:

  1. Read together every day!
  2. Notice what your toddler likes about books. This could be a new interest like trucks or animals, or an action like pointing out everything in the picture.
  3. Share your lap or snuggle with your child as you read.
  4. Offer a variety of books to read. Your toddler is growing more independent and will like choosing the book, even if he or she chooses the same book every day. Toddlers love repetition!
  5. Choose reading times when your child is most relaxed, such as before or after a nap or just before bedtime.
  6. Bring a book along with you to restaurants or appointments so you and your child can read a few pages at a time while you wait.
  7. Go beyond simply reading the words. Point out what’s happening in the story—ask how many animals are in the pictures or what will happen next in the story. This helps increase a child’s vocabulary!
  8. Continue to visit the library for book recommendations. The library may also have a designated story time for children!
This content was adapted from an article by Eileen Nelson with Minnesota Department of Education. For more information and resources to help children learn and grow, visit www.helpmegrowmn.org.
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