Monday, June 24, 2024
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Journey into understanding

ANN/THE STAR – Encouraging the habit of reading during young children stands out as one of the most beneficial practices for parents. Simply providing age-appropriate books for toddlers and children is insufficient; the transformative key lies in actively engaging in reading with them.

According to WebMD, the act of reading storybooks to preschoolers has been associated with significant benefits, including language development, the cultivation of literacy skills, and eventual success in reading. Additionally, this practice fosters independence in reading, motivating children to explore books on their own.

Before you start reading to a child, turn off the TV and put your handphone away. Background noises may distract children and without distraction, they are more focused on the activity at hand.

Reading doesn’t have to be limited to books. You can read everything from neon signages and billboards to leaflets and instructions on toy packaging. Children will observe smaller details and understand what the alphabets mean. From science to fantasy tales, here are some books you can read to kids and some that bigger kids can enjoy.

Supertato: Mean Green Time Machine by Sue Hendra & Paul Linnet

Starring vegetables from the supermarket aisle, Supertato is a superhero with the time-travelling Evil Pea as his nemesis.

Written and illustrated for children who like space adventure, the book’s unlikely combination of vegetables and time-travelling journey makes for a lively reading time for the family.

ABOVE & BELOW: ‘The 2024 Almanac of Fun’ is designed to bring fun and knowledge to kids; and ‘Supertato: Mean Green Time Machine’ is written for children who like space adventure. PHOTO: THE STAR
‘Animalium’ is a book about animals that comes with interesting facts and gorgeous drawings. PHOTO: THE STAR

Bath Time Physics by Jill Esbaum

This board book for toddlers opens their eyes to the rules of physics, and includes terms like gravity to explain the downward fall of water and evaporation to explain why bubbles burst.

It gives a simple introduction to science exemplified in a bath time setting to help toddlers make sense of the words.

The book isn’t shower-friendly, though. A plastic book that can withstand water will make the concepts even more tactile and interesting.

The Gruffalo by Julia Donaldson, illustrated by Axel Scheffler

This charming tale is about a mouse, a few animals that want to eat it and an imaginary monster called Gruffalo that turns out to be real!

A trickster tale told in rhymed sentences, it’s an adorable story about a fast-thinking, clever mouse that will have even adults smiling.

Old, New, Best… Friends by Daniela Sosa

A great book for toddlers as they expand their social circle beyond their homes, this isn’t your usual child friendship book.

It tells about a variety of friendships, including imaginary friends, a friendship that ends in argument, the feeling of not being able to make friends, and even losing friends.

It presents a realistic take about friendships in particular and people in general, and normalises the idea that not everything in friendship is positive and that some friendships work and some don’t. And that’s just fine. It’s a useful guide for children navigating a new social environment, such as a kindergarten or a school.

Animalium (Junior Edition) by Jenny Broom, illustrated by Katie Scott

Written for children who love science and the animal kingdom, Animalium, part of the Welcome to the Museum series, is a book about animals that come with interesting facts and gorgeous drawings.

From insects to owls to alligators, this is like an all-in animal encyclopaedia for the young at the age when they voraciously find new and surprising facts about the world.

The 2024 Almanac Of Fun

Kids who love trivia and fun facts would find this book enjoyable and entertaining. They can go through it by doing puzzles while learning interesting facts and celebrating all kinds of occasions.

There are National Noodle Month and World Emoji Day, for example. The days however, are American-centric so parents might need to offer additional information for comprehension. Other than that, this book is designed to bring fun and knowledge to kids. – Syida Lizta