How Kids Can Get The Most Out Of Picture Books

Reading With Picture Books

When people think of children’s books, they imagine illustrated pages and scenes dominating the story. These images can help engage children and keep them sitting still and attentive during story time, but these illustrations can be helpful beyond that as well. When it comes to illustrated books, the images are meant to accompany and enhance the story. They are meant to be looked at and explored, and they can help enrich the story as well as a child’s overall reading experience. There are plenty of benefits to exploring the images and illustrations that adorn children’s books, and using them to your advantage can help you boost your child’s reading skill, their relationship with books and can help them develop an understanding and appreciation for art.

Engage Kids with Illustrations
Many adults are familiar with the old adage “Don’t judge a book by its cover” but children do it all the time. Before children enter language, their understanding of the world is defined by their other senses and babies are especially visual learners. Illustrations can be used to entice children into reading certain books, especially if they do not yet know how to read or are still getting a handle on the skill. A book’s illustrated cover can tell them a lot. It will tell them what the story may be about, where the setting might be, and what the overall tone of the book is. For kids, book subjects tend to be positive, but the front cover may divulge whether the book is about an adventure, a how-to book or a book that explores a relationship with others that kids are familiar with.

Enhance Their Reading Skills
Illustrations convey meaning and can help describe the story unfolding, which is helpful for kids. Kids engage with illustrations because they can be understood, which is especially important before kids actually learn how to read, but can be especially helpful as kids are learning to hone their skills. Illustrations can help inform what words are in the text and can guide kids who are just learning to read. This way, the images can be used as a helpful guide that will steer kids in the right direction. It can also be a great way to introduce kids to new things and new concepts. By showing them images that they can understand, kids will be able to better understand and become familiar with ideas and concepts. Kids are still learning how to use their imagination and illustrations can aid in this process when it comes to building this skill.

The illustrated images of books are also integral to kids’ first real interactions with books themselves. Whether they are flipping through the pages on their own or even if someone is reading to them, they are still visually engaged with the images inside. This is the first real personal connection that kids experience when it comes to book reading, and it can foster a life-long love of reading.

Exercise their Brain
While many infants and toddlers tend to be visual learners, many kids retain this aspect well into childhood and the rest of their lives. People who are visual learners tend to understand things better when they can imagine scenarios or see them physically unfold. For example, a visual learner will respond better and learn faster by watching someone tie their shoe than by reading a step-by-step set of instructions. Some reluctant readers are reluctant because they do not respond as well to words as they do to images, but using illustrated books to enhance reading can change that. The images in books accompany the story and they help in the telling. Some images display exact events as they were described and may even reveal other additional information that was not inherent in the text.

Using pictures in books can help enhance a child’s reading comprehension skills and will boost their imaginative abilities. Reading picture books can help visual learners visualize what’s written in text, and as they get older they may be able to harness this skill on their own when reading books that do not have images to assist them.

Even kids who are not heavy visual learners can benefit from picture books. Learning visually is a valuable skill no matter what.

Illustrations can help enhance reading for children in other ways, as well. Kids can see new things and explore the world in pictures and images while they learn about distance locales and other cultures. Kids can also develop an understanding and familiarity with art as well.

Visit our website at for a selection of personalized picture books that will keep children reading and learning for a lifetime!

5 Clever Ways to Keep Toddlers Entertained (and Occupied)

Being a busy parent is tough, and taking care of your children while trying to complete everyday chores and errands can feel almost impossible at times. In this day and age, it may feel natural to sit your toddler down in front of the TV or the tablet screen if you want them to sit still and be quiet. While this is not always a bad idea, it definitely shouldn’t be your only option. As long as your kids are watching or playing something that is engaging and educational, that’s fine, but setting kids in front of a screen should not be the default. There are plenty of other activities you can have your kids take part in that will keep them quiet and entertained when you need them to be. Whether you are trying to get work done or if you are simply trying to get your kids to calm down, these tips can certainly help give you some ideas.

Kids with Bubbles

Have them Splash Around
It may sound a bit strange at first, but if you are working in the kitchen, plopping your toddler by the sink may be a great idea. Kids love water and toddlers are still young enough where even little, everyday things will mesmerize them for hours if possible. Prop them up safely on a stool or chair and equip them with some soap, sponges and maybe even some of their bath toys – they’ll certainly be entertained.  Bubbles!

Bubble Mania!
Speaking of suds, kids always love bubbles. If your child is old enough they can blow their own bubbles or wave their arms around to make the bubbles form. There are also plenty of battery powered toys that create bubbles for kids to jump around and play with as well. Stock them up with a full container of bubbles and an open space, they will be sure to have fun for a while.

DIY Band

Kids with Pots and Pans

If you don’t mind the noise, just give your kids the pots and pans that you always find them eyeing and let them go at it! If you want a bit of a quieter atmosphere, then plastic containers and bowls will do, too. Kids are natural percussionists, rhythm notwithstanding, so allowing them to bang away on some safe kitchen appliances may even help them tap into their innate musical talents!

Personalized CDs and Music
If you don’t want your kids to stare at a screen but still want them to experience a fun story, then there are plenty of story and music CDs that can keep them engaged, and even active. KD Novelties has a series of personalized music CDs that feature your child’s name into the story or song with well known characters, which can help keep them stay focused on the activities and make them feel like a true part of the fun.

Back to Basics
Toddlers often don’t need anything complicated or state-of-the-art to keep them busy. You can always resort to classic activities like coloring books or even simply equipping them with paper and crayons. And if you’re on the run, you can go even simpler. Kids can have loads of fun with everyday items like empty boxes or keys (if they have gone through the stage of putting things in their mouth).

No matter what it is that you’re doing, it is always important that you keep an eye on your kids. Even if you need them to stay calm and quiet for a period of time, its always safest to check in on them from time to time. Even if you are in the same room, make sure you keep tabs on what your child is doing and if they are being safe. It can sometimes be deceiving when a child is quiet, it can be a good thing or a bad thing, so always be vigilant! But with these simple tips, you can keep your children occupied and entertained while you get some important work done.

8 Tips to Keep Kids Engaged This Summer

8 Tips to Keep Kids Engaged During the Summer

School’s out! For some anyway, and for others your kids are probably counting down the days!  Kids are sure to be happy to have the next few months to themselves. As relaxing as the summer holidays are meant to be, it is still important that kids stay sharp so that they can continue their education without a hitch once the new school year starts in August or September. There are plenty of ways in which parents can do this without giving their kids homework or making them feel like they have a lot of work to do. In fact, there are some fun ways to keep kids engaged while also making sure that they’re having a good time.

1. Encourage kids to keep a journal. Keeping a journal can be fun, and it can make a great keepsake for you and your kids for years to come. While kids are writing about their summers or even writing stories of made up adventures, they are also exercising their writing and reading comprehension skills. Writing in a journal has benefits when it comes to memory as well, and can help kids remember more things with accuracy.

2. Plan fun (and educational) trips. Summertime is the most popular time for families to go on vacation, but integrating something educational and interesting into your summer plans can be both fun and informative. Even if you can’t fit a big trip into your budget, make weekly trips to the library, to local landmarks and other places that can offer a lot for kids and adults alike.

Lemonade Stand for Kids
3. Start a lemonade stand! Encourage your kids to get active and get motivated to make money. Whether they sell lemonade on the sidewalk, help with a garage sale or simply pick up some chores around the house, doing so will help give kids an incentive to take on responsibility. Encourage them to manage their money, too, so they can practice some math while they’re at it.

4. Go outside and explore. Getting outdoors is great. Fresh air and activity are integral for staying healthy and childhood obesity is quickly becoming a major problem, so making sure that kids stay plenty active and spend some time away from screens and computers can be beneficial. Going outside, going to parks, going on hikes or simply exploring your own backyard can also help spark a child’s imagination and help them develop a relationship with nature.

5. Make time to read every day. Some kids are happy reading as a pastime, but other kids may need some coaxing. Make it a routine or a tradition to share a book or two every night. Read aloud, play book-inspired games, or even act out your favorite scenes! Reading will help keep kids’ reading skills sharp, and playing games can help foster their creativity and confidence, as well.

6. Take advantage of free, online learning. Whether your kids are playing an educational flash game or partaking in an online course, kids may be more inclined to want to learn when it involves the family computer or tablet. There are plenty of educational apps and free online schools that can teach kids valuable skills without feeling like its work at all.

Kids Crafts During the Summer

7. Make some arts and crafts. Inspiring kids to create and use their imaginations can help their critical thinking skills more than you might realize. Creativity can help kids learn how to solve problems, weigh their options and make difficult choices, whether it involves figuring out how to solve a math problem or how to accomplish riding a bike. Being creative can inspire some great art, but it can also encourage out-of-the-box thinking that can help boost general problem-solving skills, too.

8. Don’t be afraid to relax! Rest and relaxation are actually important for mental and emotional development, so don’t forget to get plenty of it. As important as it is to keep kids active, don’t forget about valuable down-time either. Finding a balance between activity and reflection is important, so make sure to let your kids relax and do a bit of what they want this summer, too.

KD Novelties is publisher of personalized children’s books making children the stars of their very own stories.  Personalized Reading promotes literacy while building self-esteem.  Subscribe to our blog for more reading and family friendly tips.