Understanding a story through pictures is hard enough even if someone is telling a story to show what is happening in the pictures. It takes practice and several repeated readings to be able to absorb all that a story book has to offer. When this exercise is coupled with another daunting task- independent reading, books tend to become the least preferred entertainment option.
Making connections with favourite people, stories and things in real life, can make independent reading fun.
Personalised story books make it possible for any child to make more direct connections to incidents in their own lives. The possibility of including their favourite people in the story, doing their favourite things together establishes an instant connection and hence desire to find out what happens in the story. Since there are several familiar elements in the story, the reading activity is a lot less daunting. Familiar elements in illustrations as well as in words used in the story help a child to use Phonetic sounds to read familiar sounding words, most of which they already understand in spoken language. This process gives the confidence boost that every beginner reader needs. Repeated reading of the same books, reinforces the fact in the child’s mind that reading is after all not such a daunting task.
Personalised story books can pave the way for role play. Stories that have dialogues are perfect for role play giving room for both parent and child to take turns in reading. Reading therefore is no longer a one sided activity but something that involves both parent and child. The child observes how the parent reads their dialogue hence shifting the focus from the pictures to text. Once this is achieved the child realises the importance of text in the book and its connection to the story.
If you would like to be part of a reading community that discusses about making reading fun for children, MerryGoBooks has a quickly growing community on Facebook- THE READING JOURNEY. Please feel free to join in and talk about your experiences in this regard, ask for book recommendations, suggestions to get your child interested in reading and so on. Looking forward to seeing you there.