We conclude our series of stories regarding the importance of reading to your young children, as a way to set them up for success later in life.
Scholastic's Dillon Kalkhurst (the company's Director of Corporate and Community Alliances), who works with community organizations and corporations like us, to help put books in the hands of kids, puts this whole message into one simple statement.
"We have research that tells us that if you simply read to your child 20 minutes a day, shortly after they're born to the time when they get up to that 3rd grade level, they will finish in the top 10 percent of their standarized reading test scores."
In fact, he says those who don't read outside of school early on in life, will likely wind up in the bottom five percent. Even when you're not reading to your child, there is a simple thing that you can do to help your little one learn.
"If you're in the grocery store and your little one is sitting in the cart and you're saying 'look at that red box or look at that cucumber. What color is the cucumber?' Just talking all of the time and exposing them to different words is critical to their vocabulary development as they get older."
Debbie Battles, who's in charge of the curriculum being taught at all of Palm Beach County's public elementary schools, has a tip to get books in front of your child's face and keep them there.
"Think of a way to recognize and reward your child for reading. Whether it's something they obtain for reaching a reading goal or an added privilege in the home, but just something that makes it exciting and that they build a desire to want to do that."
She also talks about summer reading loss...something that the school district has seen more of recently. Debbie shares tips for keeping your kids reading over the summer. These are things you can start thinking about now, in order to devise a plan and be ready to implement it.
There are Scholastic Book Fairs going on at schools throughout Palm Beach County during the month of October.
Scholastic now has an app to enhance your experience. The free app for the iPhone and Android phones provides you with additional book details such as author videos, award winners and podcasts. If you're not sure whether a book is age appropriate for your child, you can simply scan a book cover or barcode at the Book Fair to find out. The app will give you details on reading levels, age and grade, book summary and price.
Click Here to download the app and find the closest Scholastic Book Fair to you.
You can win a new Scholastic library for your child's class. Click Here to find out more.