Reading and sharing Christmas books with young children is lots of fun at this time of year and those stories have a special gift of supporting early learning. For our entire lifetime, much of what we do, what we learn, and how we relate to others will be done using language. No one language in particular, but all of them. It’s obvious to see then why language is so important and so helpful for early learning and brain development. Books and stories are another way to expose kids to language and support early development.
On my radio show, Learn and Play with Mrs. A, I was able to share the whole text of 2 wonderful Christmas stories with listeners. The Global Christmas by Pam Renzi is written by a grandmother who wants to encourage a spirit of ‘connectedness’ of people all around the world. Now You Know The Secret is a grandmother’s answer to a little girl’s question: Is Santa real? It is the story of the very real Saint Nicholas who lived a long time ago and how, once we know the secret about how Santa came to be, we can be real Santas to each other.
These stories will be understood by older preschoolers. There are other wonderful books for wee little ones. Going into a bookstore at this time of year is difficult because there are so many great titles that it’s hard to choose. Libraries will also have a selection. Check out garage sales and thrift stores for children’s books. Think of books as the wrapping on a learning present and share as many as you can with your child. A few stories a day, (or the same one over and over), several times a week, all year long add up to over one thousand!! By the time a child starts school, that can become more than 5000. Children who have been read to at home have a much, much easier time learning to read later on. That’s another gift. What books and stories can you share with your child?