How to Introduce Your Child to Reading at Just Three Years Old

Have you been thinking of introducing your three-year-old to books, but you’re not sure if it’ll be worth it as the child may be too young or too playful to pay attention?

Then you’re at the right place, for below are easy and fun ways you can introduce your child to reading for life.

Start with Picturebooks:

It’s easy for a three-year-old to find the picture of a bird more fascinating than the word itself. So start by showing your kid the images before spelling or reading aloud. This will quickly grab their attention and interest to know what’s up. 

Let them spell the words:

Once they can identify the picture, you can spell out the words for them. Again, make sure your child’s eyes are on the spelling to enable them to recognise it quickly–whenever or wherever they see it again. Also, make sure they read it aloud. You can even turn it into a rhyme or a song to make it stick faster. 

Now they can connect the words with the pictures: 

While reading, you can instruct your child to point to each word and its picture. This keeps them grounded in the story till the end. 

Let them act or talk like the main character

Reading a story is fun, but acting it out can be more fun! So set your kid up to act and talk as the character would. Allow them to copy the character’s facial expression and create a voice they think the character would have. 

Let them predict what will happen next: 

Before you open the first page or the one after, ask, ‘what do you think will happen?’ This will surely get your child talking, excited, and interested all through.

After reading, ask them what they can remember from the book:

 It could be the character’s name, where the story took place, what the character looked like, what the character liked, etc.

Ask them if they liked the book: 

A child can quickly tell what they are or dislike. So after reading, ask them what they thought about the book: did you like it, did it make you cry or laugh, was it boring, would you like to read another like this one? Etc.

Let them write their own story: Three-year-olds can be highly imaginative when given a chance. So help them exploit their gifts by writing their own stories. You can allow them to use their favourite character or create one of their own; let them use a real-world setting or create a new one. Whatever it may be, let them choose and have fun with it.

Reward them: 

Which child doesn’t love receiving gifts, especially for something they did? So be sure to reward them for each word they spell and read correctly, no matter how little it may seem. This will make them realise the worth of their efforts towards reading.

Let them pick the following book

Now that you have introduced your child to reading, let them choose the next read. You can even allow them to lead the next session. All you get to do is sit, listen, and correct any mistake your child may make. Don’t forget to make it fun! Good luck.

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