For #WorldBookDay, Make Reading Fun! The first rule with children is always to enjoy yourself while you read to them, they will feel your emotion and enjoy it too. There are lots of ways to make story time more fun and interesting for you and your child:
• Use your child’s favourite puppet or soft toy and make the toy become the main character of the book.
• Change the story so it fits in with your child’s life: change names, hair colour of the characters, jobs etc.
• Make sound effects using your voice or every day objects: a hairdryer to make wind, a cardboard box full of balls to make the thunder...
• Get your child to say what will happen next or fill in missing words in the story as you go along.
• Make up some book bags: collect objects from the story in a bag and let your child touch them while you read through the book.
Reading to blind and visual impaired children is very important. Listening to your voice gives them a feel for the sounds and rhythms of language, and it makes them feel secure. When reading with your child, allow them to feel the tactile parts of the book whilst you read the story so they can start to build an idea of what the object is.
If the child doesn’t understand the concept, it is important to allow the child to feel a solid object so they can understand what it actually is and its use. This will help them as they develop as they will use this learning style to make conversations with their peers and with further reading. It allows the visually impaired child to build their own view of the world.
Choose books with clear, large prints, which have a good contrast between the print and the background, for example black print on white pages. Try to find bold and simple images, especially books that don’t rely too much on pictures to tell the story. Start with books with different textures, flaps, or books that make noises.
Before reading to your child, make yourself comfortable and according to the age of your child, either sit beside them or sit them on your lap. Allow them to choose the book they want to read, they will develop their taste and will have a favourite book you will have to read a thousand times. Let them turn the pages and touch the textured bits of the book, remember to tell your child what they are about to feel so the textures do not come as a shock when touched.
There will be plenty of books to choose from at your local library, and you may also find a Bounce and Rhyme session or Book Bug session near you by visiting http://www.scottishbooktrust.com/ You can also borrow books in accessible formats from these sites: http://www.rniblibrary.com/ or http://www.livingpaintings.org/ and whatever book you choose, have fun!