Tuesday, June 22, 2010
Stories and Summer Solstice
Say that 10 times fast!
Yesterday, June 21, was the summer solstice. For many of the ancients, the summer solstice was essential to their well-being. Associated with agriculture, the summer solstice was a reminder that a turning point in the growing season had been reached. As a modern day parent, you can use this analogy to think of it as a turning point in the way you nurture your child's growth. Starting today, try to do one thing each day to prepare your child for later reading achievement.
Oral language is the basis of literacy. This summer, encourage your child to develop and grow their oral language through storytelling with you. Think of all the great things you do together in the summer that they can tell stories about, like going to the beach, picking berries, visiting relatives, riding bicycles, and so on. There are lots of new experiences your child will enjoy talking about. Research tells us that preschool children will tell their best stories about personal experiences. Storytelling gives your child the opportunity to both tell and hear stories, which encourages them to develop active speaking and listening skills. It fuels the imagination and allows your child to develop their own mental images of the story.
Here’s what you can do to help your child become a successful storyteller:
- Find time to have a good conversation with your child, every day. Storytelling requires us to explore or elaborate on each event rather than jumping from one topic to another. It requires a good description of all the small details.
- Talk with your child about things that happened in the past (i.e., earlier today, yesterday, last week).
- Tell stories that have a sequence of events so that there is a clear beginning, middle and end. Fairy tales are great for this! Talk about the sequence of special events or even daily routines. Use words like: first, then and after. (i.e., First we will wake up, and then eat breakfast. After we will get dressed.)
- Read stories with simple plots aloud to your child.
- Talk about the things your child wants to talk about. Follow their lead!
Great summer stories to read with your child:
Fun Dog, Sun Dog by Deborah Heiligman
10 Little Rubber Ducks by Eric Carle
Spot Goes to the Beach by Eric Hill