Having worked in Early Years for several years now I personally feel that sometimes there is nothing more inviting to children than the opportunity to read a book!
Now this may sound very cliché but reading with a child is so simple yet so valuable towards their learning and development. A single book can impact a child to support them with skills that feed into other areas of their play, including their imaginative skills, early letter recognition and so much more.
I’m sure there are many of us adults, who still remember one of their childhood favourites now- mine was Peter Rabbit. I still have the same copy of that book some 20 years later and hope to share it with the children I hope to have in the future to share that experience with them.
At Sunny Days, reading books happens frequently throughout the day and the children are always encouraged to look through books for themselves too- lots of books are readily available for them to look through along with blankets, cushions and soft toys should they want to really delve into it and get comfy 😊
When we read with/to the children we recognise the importance of capturing their focus from the first word, or even the front cover! We understand that our own speaking, listening, and reading of the English language enables the children to hear and develop their own language and vocabulary well.
We often read to children in a way that excites them, we often introduce props to support the physical book reading ensuring the children are engaged with the story as it unfolds before their eyes.
During or after the story the children are given the opportunity to share their ideas, thoughts, and concepts to tell us what they think might happen, tell us how the characters are feeling or just giggle at the staff member making different voices!
If you haven’t heard already from your child, the most popular story here currently is ‘The three Little Pigs’. Now with this, we don’t use a story book, Lewis is the chosen storyteller quite often and he uses the story sack we have with our pigs, their houses, and the Wolf. The children are so familiar with Lewis telling this story that they can also recite it for themselves, enhancing their vocabulary skills through and through- How fantastic! If you haven’t already you can see a clip of this story being told by Lewis on our Facebook page- Sunny Days Bridport!
Now that I have shared with you, how we tell stories at the setting, I would like to share these opportunities with you as parents and carers. We have recently set up some ‘Story sacks’ that are available for you to sign out with your child and use at home with them.
Within these sacks there are a range of activities you can do with the book and other items provided to ensure that you and your family have the best experience reading the book. These story bags are available from Reception, and we have already received some great feedback. Please feel free to ask a member of staff during the drop off or collection time to access these bags and enjoy reading!