Making Reading Fun, Part 2: Books as Toys

Reading IS fun! But sometimes it takes kids some time to realize it - mostly because learning how to read can be really, really hard. Last week, we talked about using nonfiction as a way into the joy of reading.
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Making Reading Fun, Part 1: Great Nonfiction

When you think about the reasons you like to read, reading for reading's sake is probably not one of them. We read to learn about ourselves and others, to study topics that interest us, or to experience stories both real and imaginary. Unfortunately, children who are just learning to read often see reading as difficult, not fun at all! As parents and caregivers, what can we do to encourage the early literacy concept of print motivation, or reading for fun, when children are not able to read well on their own?
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What Flag Is That? A Patriotic Exploration

In honor of a summer of patriotic holidays (Memorial Day, Flag Day, and just this week, Independence Day), why not go on a learning expedition with your child about flags of the world? We all know what the flag of the United States of America looks like, but what about Norway's flag? Croatia? Egypt? Peru? Spain? Google Image Search is useful to see what flags look like, but to get the full history of the symbolism of different flags, head to the 929.9s and 994s in the Children's nonfiction section at your library.
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Sing This Book!: Pete the Cat's I Love My White Shoes

Singing is an important early literacy activity that parents and caregivers should be engaging in every day with children...but it's also a lot of fun! There are many great picture books that feature songs, or that can be sung as you read them. The Pete the Cat book "I Love My White Shoes" is one of my favorites to sing with kids because of its extreme interactivity.
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Five for Rhyme Time!

Last week, I briefly touched on the importance of including rhyming in your interactions with children, whether in conversation or reading aloud. Phonological awareness is a key skill necessary to learn how to read, and the stronger a child's sense of rhyme before they begin to learn to read, the better! Here are 5 excellent picture books with great rhymes in them:
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Rhyme Time! How Rhyme Helps Prepare Kids for Reading

In a recent episode of the telenovela/drama/comedy "Jane the Virgin" on the CW network, the eponymous character is surprised when her son's teacher suggests that he need more support in reading. (It's surprising because Jane is a published author and voracious reader.) "Play rhyming games with him!" she suggests, and that's exactly what she does. "What word rhymes with 'heart'?" she asks. He thinks a moment. "...Fart!"  Jubilation and laughter follow.
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Great Early Readers Series Alert: Anna Hibiscus

"Anna Hibiscus lives in Africa. Amazing Africa!" That is how most of the chapters in the various Anna Hibiscus early reader series begin, and you easily see the amazing-ness that author Atinuke creates of young Anna's life. Living with her parents and twin brothers (Double and Trouble), Anna goes through her everyday life with curiosity and delight. From taking a family vacation, to starting school, to preparing to visit her grandmother in Canada, Anna's experiences are similar enough to American children's lives to be familiar, but different enough to hold novelty.
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THE SUMMER READING PROGRAM IS HERE!

Hooray, hooray, summer reading is here! The Tulsa City-County Library wants babies, preschoolers, and children to LOVE reading and learning. That's why we are once again offering a Summer Reading Program for Birth to Pre-K and Children. (There are also programs for teens and adults!) Learn more at www.TulsaLibrary.org/Summer - or visit one of our 24 library locations and the bookmobile around the city and county!
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Summer Reading: Cool Stuff Kids Can Earn

Starting on May 28 (that's in less than a week!), babies, preschoolers, and children can register for the Summer Reading Program at any of the 24 locations - and the bookmobile - of the Tulsa City-County Library!  This program is simple: This summer, between May 28 and August 3, when babies or children read (or, in the case of babies and young children, have read TO them) 8 books... AND Visit the library 4 times...
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Summer Reading Program: FREE Entertainment!

Tulsa City-County Library's Summer Reading Program begins on May 28! There's a program for every person in your family - babies and toddlers, children, teens, and adults - to earn great prizes just for reading this summer. But there's another side of the Summer Reading Program that is especially great for families: hundreds of FREE entertainment programs at every one of our 24 library locations throughout the summer!   Do your kids like magicians? What about juggling? Are they into zoo animals? Or jamming to sweet tunes?
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