Family Literacy Kits


Amy Hoffman

Do you ever wonder how you can encourage family members to read to their children at home? Create some Home Literacy Kits! Parents can sign out a kit for a week and enjoy the book and some related activities with their child. To really increase their interest, read books from the kits in your classroom each month; the children will want to tell their families all about those books.

A kit should include a children’s book and activities that relate to the book and extend learning. These activities could include:

  • A writing journal with erasable crayons or paper and crayons so children can draw pictures from the story
  • Simple games (picture bingo, matching games, flash cards)
  • Toys (e.g., finger puppets or small toys to retell the story, manipulatives that relate to the story)
  • Or any other items that are relevant to the book

When you first introduce the concept of the kits to your program, you can also create a flyer including some information about reading to children at home. Here are some items you can include:

Great reasons to read to your child at home:

  • Reading aloud can help your child successfully learn to read.
  • Reading to your child helps to activate the part of his brain that helps him to understand the meaning of language. The more you read to a child, the larger his vocabulary will grow. The language of books is more descriptive than the language used in daily conversations.
  • When you read to a child, you’re sending the message that reading is worthwhile.
  • Reading aloud lets a child use his imagination to explore people, places, times, and events beyond his own experiences.
  • It’s fun! You’re creating memories that will last a lifetime. When your child sees an adult excited about reading, she will catch your enthusiasm.

Some tips for reading with your child:

  • Talk about what you’re reading either before, during, or after you read. Encourage your child to ask questions.
  • Use different voices for different characters; encourage your child to make up character voices too.
  • Read for as long as your child pays attention. Her attention span will grow over time.
  • Ask your child what he would like to read.
  • Don’t be afraid to read the same book over and over each time your child picks it. Why not try reading that book after reading another book?
  • You can read to your child anywhere: at home, on a blanket in the park, at the dentist’s office, or waiting in the checkout line at the grocery store. The opportunities are endless.
  • Even after your child learns to read, it’s still important for you to read together.
  • Take home one of our Home Literacy Kits!

For additional information, see the following:

  • Reading is Fundamental


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