“Read Across America” is an annual, nationwide reading celebration that takes place the week before and on March 2—Dr. Seuss’s birthday. Across the country, thousands of schools participate by bringing together kids and books to emphasize the importance of reading and learning. You can help your child to read, learn and grow, during this special week, and year-round, too! Here are some suggestions to get you started…..(And Every Day, too)!
As a Speech Language Pathologist, I often use our classroom Bluebee Pals during therapy to work on reading, talking and playing skills! My students really relate to their Bluebee therapy friends, and look forward to learning with them! Teaching and learning begin at home. Parents are the first and most important teachers in the early, developmental years. Young children learn essential, foundational speech, receptive and expressive language, social, pre-reading, cognitive, numeracy and communication skills necessary for future academic success through meaningful play and lots of language rich learning opportunities.
Read, Read, Read!
Read to your child daily. Reading helps develop vocabulary, attending, sentence construction, grammar, pronoun usage, social-skills, turn-taking, imagination, creativity, sequential thought, emotions, wh-questions, comprehension, receptive/expressive language skills, critical thinking and problem solving, and so much more! Parents provide many natural educational interactions while reading, talking about the subject matter and elements of the story, questioning about the story, and practicing story retelling.
During Read Across America week, books by Dr. Seuss are highlighted. Here are a few of our class favorites. Have your own Dr. Seuss celebration at home by reading with your favorite Bluebee Pals!
Green Eggs and Ham by Oceanhouse Media
One Fish Two Fish – Dr. Seuss by Oceanhouse Media
The Cat in the Hat by Oceanhouse Media
Mr. Brown Can Moo! Can You? by Oceanhouse Media
Oh, the Places You’ll Go! by Oceanhouse Media
Horton Hears a Who! by Oceanhouse Media
There are also options to purchase bundles of Dr. Seuss favorites!
10 Dr. Seuss Bestsellers by Oceanhouse Media
Talk, Talk, Talk!
Parents need to talk to their children! Talking and commenting on the world around them is a great, natural way to teach children. Examples: In the grocery store: “How many yellow fruits do you see? How many green vegetables? Let’s buy three red apples”. In the car: “Let’s see how many blue cars we can count” or “How many things can people ride in to go somewhere”? “Let’s look for things that are orange”. “Can you find a stop sign? What colors are in a traffic light”? At home during interactive play: “Oh, wow, I see that you are racing your red car and your blue car. Which one do you think will go faster”? Simple commenting and talking about what you and your child are doing and seeing and asking questions is a powerful educational tool. Commenting on the world around them will build and reinforce basic concepts, numeracy, turn-taking, pragmatic skills, receptive and expressive language, critical thinking and reasoning skills, problem solving, grammar, and more.
Play, Play, Play!
Play with your children! Lots and lots of learning takes place during play! Play dolls, play trucks, play games, play marbles, play pretend! Provide opportunities for you preschoolers to interact with peers! Beginning games such as Candy Land, Spot It, Pop the Pig, I Spy, Zingo and more are great for practicing social skills, turn-taking, sharing, numbers, colors, matching and categorization skills. Playing and learning through songs and finger-plays such as “Itty Bitty Spider, 5 Little Ducks, etc, is a great way to teach rhyming, sequencing, memory and basic concept skills. Learning through play provides powerful opportunities for cognitive growth.
Above all, make learning FUN!