Read to your children any time, any place! Books are great entertainment for kids on the go! Reading together is a wonderful way to pass the time on busses or planes, or while waiting in doctor’s offices, restaurants, at the car repair shop, or during siblings’ long lessons.
Start cold winter mornings with a feeling of closeness by reading aloud during breakfast. Or, leave books on the table for children to read and look at while they eat. For the love of books-- do give your children or grandchildren the gift of a special book for Valentine’s Day!
Instead of buying a card to give with a baby shower present, choose a book and write your “welcome to the world” message inside. It costs about the same, and you’re helping launch the new child’s collection of books at home.
Libraries are at the heart of our communities and play an important role in the lives of families. Taking regular trips to the library from the time baby is small can become a fun and meaningful family ritual. We even know of families who use a laundry basket to bring home their pile of new library books every week!
Grand parents can play an important role in helping children love books. When grandchildren visit, make it a tradition to go to the library or a local bookstore. If you’re far away, read a favorite book into a tape and send it to your grandchildren so they can experience the sound of your voice reading to them. Always, always give books for birthdays and holidays!
There are many fun books with picnic themes. Pack an appropriate book along with some of the favorite foods or activities from the book. For example, a picnic with Eric Carle’s “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” could include, “one piece of chocolate cake, one ice-cream cone, one pickle...” etc.
Children form very close emotional attachments to books during childhood. Take note of your children’s very favorite books as they grow, and once outgrown, set them aside. Gift wrap and present these treasures on your child’s 18th birthday.
For a family trip, be sure to pack some books on tape. You might even be able to choose something related to your planned activities or destination!
Books on tape are also great for evenings at home. Everyone loves to be read to, and this is an opportunity to listen to the beautiful voices of some very accomplished actors.
Even after your child begins to read on his own don’t stop reading aloud! Tucking a favorite book into your child’s backpack can ease the transition from home to school. A favorite book is like a friend to a child.
How about a book-themed party? “Little House on the Prairie”, Harry Potter... the possibilities are endless!
Ask every guest to bring a wrapped book as a gift instead of a toy. The birthday child can give a wrapped book to guests as a party favor as well.
To encourage reading in your family, create a family book tree on a convenient wall. Each family member can add a leaf for every book they read. As the leaves fall outside, your tree will be just leafing out.
Each year after children go to sleep on Christmas Eve, leave a gift-wrapped book at the end of their beds, to be opened first thing in the morning. A special book given on the last night of Hanukkah, in an Easter basket, or at the dinner table on the first day of school can also become a wonderful tradition.