I have always been a big fan of books. I love reading and was an early reader (started to read words when I 3, books at 4). Apparently I would read back of cereal packets, flyers, signs…pretty much anything with words on.
J has taken after me in this respect. He has always loved books. When he was 2 he started to recognise logos and some letters and most numerals 1-10. Anything visual and he is interested. He loves to have catalogues and flyers, books and back of the toy packages like the Hotwheel cars or Star Wars toys. I’ve written before about how I use books to help J in his speech and language development, and now he’s older I continue to find ways to make books fun and interactive.
As it’s National Storytelling Week I thought I’d share some of J’s favourite stories and how we use them for more than simply bedtime reading:
Busy Building Site
This is a great flap book. We read it when playing with J’s tool set he got for Christmas. We read all about the school being built and J likes to lift the flaps to see what’s underneath. We talk about the name of the tools, the materials and I ask him questions about the picture. We then use J’s tools to build and fix things. J prefers to go around the room with the nail gun or the power drill and see what he can ‘fix’ around the living room…including trying to fix me! This book is great for 2yrs+ and can be a quick read or a discussion point.
Star Wars Lightsaber Rescue
Those of you who read my blog and social media regularly will know that since Christmas J has become a HUGE Star Wars fan. It’s become more of an obsession at this point and has started to dominate all of J’s play. Instead of fighting against it, I use his interest to bring in other areas of learning and play experiences. Since his Star Wars phase begun he has learnt to build with sticklebricks and Lego. This is a big step as previous he showed little interest in actually building and creating with it. Now they become Tie Strikers and the Millenium Falcon.
(Heres J’s story corner in his bedroom)
We use this book to bring in literacy and reading skills. There’s days where no other book will be touched but I get this out and he’ll come running over. The great thing about this sound and light book is the fact that it encourages pre-reading skills. J will ‘read’ the story by looking at the pictures alongside the text. It will tell him which button to press and in turn he is able to tell ME the story using them.
Something Special: Mr Tumbles’ Big Book of Counting
J has always had a special relationship with Mr T. He helped J a lot when he was 1/2 as he learnt a lot of Makaton from him. J realised he wasn’t the only one to use signing to communicate. Soon we amassed a collection of Mr Tumble toys and resources. The books are great as they give clear signs for adults to demonstrate. Again, this is a flap book so J is instantly more engaged as he can help with the story. I encourage J to trace the numerals with his fingers to practise ready for writing them himself. We also read the Something Special magazine each month. Storytelling doesn’t have to be just from books. Anything you can encourage your child to look at and enjoy is a win.
The Tiger Who Came to Tea
This is a favourite of mine. I loved reading this when I worked in the preschool and was eager for J to be old enough to enjoy it with me. This is the type of book where we snuggle together on the sofa or in his bed and laugh over the cheeky behaviour of the tiger. J thinks its hilarious that he drinks all the water and eats all the food. I love having props and visuals to go with stories. I think it really brings stories to life. Children can use the props and toys to retell the story or explore it in more detail. This is especially helpful if you have a little one who isn’t really interested in the actual book yet. Sometimes J doesn’t really want to listen or is a bit overloaded. So I use Makaton as a visual instead. It means that even if he’s not fully listening then his other senses are still able to follow me. I highly recommend the Makaton website. Their store has a ton of great resources you can download for free or purchase.
(J’s Cosy Corner where he can relax with a good book)
This week, why not choose a book or two, and try to think of ways you can make it more interactive. What fun can you have based on the book? If you’re out of ideas then try pinterest or Twinkl. That’s where I often get my inspiration from. I’d love to know if there’s anything you’ve tried, any suggestions you’d like to share?
Disclaimer: I am Twinkl blogger and huge fan. My subscription was offered in return for post showing our use of Twinkl resources. I do no receive any financial compensation and links are not affiliate. I have no link to Makaton other than a long time believer that signing support communication. Again, I receive no financial compensation and links are not affiliate. All thoughts, ramblings and opinions are my own.