Reading aloud and sharing stories with your child is one of the most important and enjoyable things you can do together. If you’re not sure what or how to start reading with your toddler, here are some ideas.
Why reading with your toddler is important Sharing stories, talking and singing every day helps your child’s development in lots of ways.
You’re getting your child familiar with sounds, words, language, print and, eventually, the value and joy of books. This all builds your child’s early literacy skills and helps him go on to read successfully later in childhood.
Reading stories also stimulates your child’s imagination and helps her learn about the world around her.
And reading together creates a precious time for bonding with your child.
You can start reading to your child as early as you like – the earlier the better. Our articles on
reading and storytelling with children and
developing literacy have more information to get you and your child started.
Sharing books with your toddler
At this age and stage, reading with your child is all about having fun with books, spending special time together and modelling a love of books.
Here are some tips that can help you and your budding reader make the most of book time:
These general tips are helpful for reading and storytelling with most young children:
What to read with your toddler
There are so many books to choose from that it can be hard to know where to start.
As a broad rule, young children often enjoy books that have good rhyme, rhythm and repetition – and these qualities can help children learn. Books that are the right length for your child will keep him engaged.
Toddlers might especially enjoy:
Here are some great books for toddlers and you can also check the availability of these books from the National Library:
Why not visit your library? It’s free to join and borrow. The staff will be able to recommend books for you and your child to enjoy.
Video: Telling stories with children
Watch this video to learn about the importance of storytelling, and how you can get your child involved in the stories that you tell.