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Questions to Ask Your Child to Boost Reading Comprehension

When it comes to building reading skills, what better than actually reading? However knowing the words, sounding them out, and reading them aloud is only part of the skill set that reading requires and can it help enhance the experience if done correctly. Being able to read is one thing, but retaining information, making inferences and forming opinions is another important aspect of this activity – especially in regards to academics. It is important that kids are not only able to read, but that they are also able to take something away from the experience as well. This can mean learning new things, but it can also mean connecting with a fictional character on a personal level or being inspired to engage their imaginations and do something new.

There are some ways parents can help kids boost their reading comprehension skills to get them in the habit of thinking actively.

Ask Their Opinion

This is straightforward, but it can help. After story time, whether it is the parent reading to the child or the child reading aloud, asking questions about the book or the chapter that was just read can help a lot. Not only can asking questions help engage their minds, but having a discussion about the story can help boost kids’ memories and encourage them to engage with the material more personally.

Ask them who their favorite character was and why. Ask them why they think the character did what they did in the story, and what they might have done differently if they were in their shoes. You can even ask your child what they think might happen next or what they would write if they were in charge of the next chapter or sequel.

Encourage Them to Keep a Journal

Kids don’t necessarily have to recount their days; kids can write about their lives, the things they read, school, or anything they like. The important thing is that they are writing. Writing is inherently related to reading in nature, and writing can help children better understand written material. Not only that, but writing can help boost communication skills, empathy and emotional understanding.

Give your kids prompts to answer in their journal, whether it is about their day, what happened at school, or what they think about the things they are reading. Ask them engaging questions and see what they come up with.

Have Them Tell You a Story

Sometimes, bedtime includes a story from mom or dad and not from a book. Storytelling in any form can be beneficial, plus it’s a great way to spend time together and form wonderful memories. But next time at bedtime, ask your child to tell you a story instead – and don’t just listen in, be an active audience member. Ask your kids about their characters and the events of the story, ask them why things happen or why a character did something a certain way. These are the same questions you may have asked your children after reading a book, but asking them about their own stories can help to further engage their active sense of reasoning and understanding. These skills will come in handy when kids are reading on their own and once they begin to ask themselves these questions, they will become more active and understanding readers.

Below are some starter questions you may consider asking your child before choosing a book, while reading a book, or when you’re finished reading:

Picking out a book

• Why did you choose this book?

• Did you like the picture on the front? What’s happening in the image?

• What could this book be about?

Before reading the book

• Can you point to the title? or What is this? (pointing to the title)

• What might happen in the story?

• Talk about the different parts of the book (ex. front cover, back cover, title, author, illustrator, etc.)

• If it is an informational book, ask them what they hope to learn and why

While reading

• What has happened so far?

• What might happen next?

•How do you think the story might end?

• What sort of character is….? How would you describe them? Would you be friends with them?

• How would you feel if you had been that character? Has anything like that happened to you? What would you do if this happened to you?

• If reading an information book: Have you learned anything new? What else would you like to know?

At the end of the book

• What was their favorite part? What was the most interesting/exciting part of the book?

• Why did that character do … (give a situation from the story as an example)?

• What happened in the story?

• Who are the main characters in the story?

• What character would you like to be?

• Did you like this book?

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How Personalized Books Inspire The Joy of Reading

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Avid readers tend to carry a very special trait. We are the daydreamers. We are the ones who can come up with a thousand scenarios and the ones who will mourn a fictional character. Reading is more than a hobby. It gives us hope and inspiration. It opens our mind to things we had never thought of before and worlds where we can get lost in.

It is only natural then, that we would want our children to have that same love for reading.

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Why Reading Is Crucial For Children

Researchers have found that reading to our children should start as early as when the baby is in the womb, mainly because when we read, our tone changes and babies can listen to our voice.

Reading is a way for us to build a stronger bond with our children as we slow down, open the book and have a more peaceful moment to spend together during the day. Books ignite our children’s imagination and they will learn to be more empathic as they read about people who are different from them — people of different cultures and ways of life.

Books also arm children with stronger literacy skills, which is especially important, seeing as 34 percent of children entering kindergarten have been found to lack basic language skills.

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How Personalized Books Help Your Kids Fall In Love With Reading

Reading them Dr. Suess or The Little Prince is a magical reading experience in itself but what personalized books can do is to get your kids to create a more profound connection with reading. Having them be the stars of a magical story is a way to ensure that reading will become an immersive experience for them and a more interesting way to spend time.

With personalized books, you can choose to tell them the story you want. You can have them learn about their family’s history in a more exciting way or you can put them in situations that are out of this world. It is a medium where they can learn to deal with challenges and strange situations in a safe environment and learn how to think logically along the way.

Children today are tempted by the fleeting entertainment of iPads and TVs. Give them the tools they need to fall in love with reading. And, of course, an even better way to inspire younger children is to read to them every night before they go to sleep. With a personalized book, they’ll dream themselves into every story you tell.

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Spring-Break Ideas for Kids and Families

Now that the major holidays are over, there are only a few more breaks before school is out for the summer. Depending on where you live, a Spring break may be headed your way. It’s important that parents and guardians provide ideas and encouragement when it comes to certain activities that children can do during their time off from school. Here are some suggestions for the upcoming spring break.

Hitting the Road

If you have the opportunity, traveling somewhere new can help broaden your child’s perception and understanding of the world around them. Visit a part of the country you’ve never seen or look for something new to do if you’re visiting a family favorite location. Traveling in general can be incredibly beneficial for children, especially when they are young. Exposing them to different places, people, cultures, climates, and other activities can help encourage their creativity as well as their ability to connect with different people, too.

Children’s museums are a great option that can help entertain the whole family while teaching you all a little something new, too. Museums geared towards children, or museums that offer special children’s tours, can help make learning fun and more interactive, while also providing a unique experience.

Even if you can’t afford an extravagant vacation, day trips are also a great option. Consider taking the kids to a nearby metropolitan area, museums as mentioned, looking for historic landmarks or even visiting any nearby National Parks or forests if the weather permits outdoor activities. Pick up a new skill, take a class, or even volunteer.

Staying Indoors

If you’re staying indoors then you may be thinking of other activities that are both wholesome and exciting to keep your child occupied.

Reading is a great way for kids to experience new things without necessarily having to go anywhere. The act of reading can help bolster cognitive function, abstract understanding, and communication skills while also helping your child develop other key skills that will help them academically. Reading can also help introduce your child to new ideas, expanding their imagination and their ability to empathize with others. Choose a book series you can explore during the break or consider some personalized books, from our website, that provides kids with a uniquely personal experience that they may not be able to experience otherwise if a trip or vacation is out of the question. Plus, plenty of libraries offer kid-centric activities year-round but especially during school breaks to help keep kids active or to help parents who may still have to work during the spring-break recess.

Get Creative and Make Memories with the Kids

Aside from exploring and discovering new stories and adventures through books, you can create some, too by getting creative with arts and crafts! Create a family adventure and write it down, complete with illustrations and scenes that you can act out together.

However, no matter what, family time should take priority during breaks like these, even if parents or guardians still have to work during the day. Make time to prep dinner together, creating lifelong memories. Making a point of eating dinner together is important for families no matter what time of the year or day of the week it is, but you can make the occasion extra special over the break by preparing a well-loved family meal, trying something new, or making a project out of it.

It’s also important not to underestimate the power of family movie night. There are hundreds of family friendly movies on subscription channels like Netflix or Hulu that you can tune into from the comfort of your own home, and plenty of family friendly and kid movies are released in the early spring as well. Make a small outing, get some snacks and hit the theater! Local libraries and community centers sometimes host movie nights or other events for kids and families to partake in, so those are worthy of considering as well.

A break from school may seem like a small vacation to some, but if you plan accordingly and explore your options, you and your kids can make the most of it before school is back in session!

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