About the Calendar
Children love to learn, and your child learns best when doing fun and interesting activities with you. This calendar provides daily activities for you to do together that are enjoyable and educational. These activities will help you get your child ready to succeed in school. Many of the activities require no supplies or use only common household items. “Play” is a child’s “work” so simply playing with your child using daily activities is the goal. Remember, the things you learn with joy, you’ll remember forever.
Tips for Using the Calendar
- Every month includes a booklist of suggested titles to read with your child. These are just suggestions. Choose books together with your child that you will both enjoy.
- Each day has an activity to do together. Like the booklists, these are suggestions. You can change them to better suit your child or make up your own activity.
- Some activities use salt dough or homemade play-dough. Easy recipes for both are in the “Arts & Crafts” section of this calendar located in the back.
- If a book or activity is not interesting to your child, stop and try something else. The goal is to make learning fun.
- Children love to read the same books over and over, and doing so gives them a certain assurance and confidence. Read a book as many times as a child wants.
- Every child learns at his/her own pace. If you are doing these activities with more than one child, make sure to praise each child’s effort without comparing them to each other.
Tips for Reading Out Loud
- Reading out loud and talking about books is one of the most important things you can do to get your child ready for reading and success in school.
- Set the Mood: Make yourself and your child comfortable. Sit next to each other or with your child on your lap. Develop a routine of when you might read together.
- Preparation: Look over the book before reading it together to make sure you are comfortable with it. Hold the book so the child can see it.
- Expression: Change your voice for different characters; make your voice soft and loud. Put life and energy into your reading!
- Patience: Take time to answer your child’s questions. Their questions show that they are engaged in the story. It’s ok if your young child can’t sit still through the story. A child who moves around or plays with a quiet toy may still be listening to every word.
- Participation: Let them repeat phrases with you or leave out a word here and there; see if they can fill in the blank. Look at the pictures to help tell the story; ask your child what is happening or what happens next.
- Pace: Don’t race while reading. Take your time.
Tips for Using the Library
- Visit Often: Your local public library always has new books and other resources for you and your child to explore.
- Attend Events: Most libraries have free programs for young children such as storytimes, puppet shows, and summer reading programs.
- Go Online: You can access the Internet for free and find out information on health and wellness, child safety and school readiness.
- Ask a Librarian: If you have trouble figuring out where to start or how to use the library, ask!
This is just the beginning...
There is a lot of good information that wouldn't fit in this calendar. Use the links and resources listed in the back of the calendar to learn more. There are also organizations in your community that offer a wealth of information. This calendar provides contact information for many of these organizations, but be sure to check for others that may be near you.
Thank You IMLS!
This project was made possible by a grant from the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services.