Sometimes, it can seem like suggesting anything to parents is playing with fire, or will provoke some sort of explosive reaction...
Suggestions phrased as encouragement to caregivers that what they are already doing right now will go over a lot better than others. Truthfully, what parents and caregivers are already doing is probably pretty good, in terms of getting their children ready to read. After all, they're coming to the libary already, right?
Every now and then, though, the caregivers need a little bit of a prod to participate.
What much of these practices and asides boil down to is "Do what you are already doing, but more mindfully, and possibly, more often."
Here's some examples of encouragement:
- Do you talk to your kids at home? Great! The more you do it, the quicker they learn language. The more words you use, the more words they have."
- If you speak more than one language in your family, use all your languages at home - your kids will benefit from hearing all the possible sounds they'll need to know to be able to communicate."
If you need to prod the caregivers a bit:
- "Singing with your kids helps them learn language. Nobody here will judge you on your singing voice, so feel free to join in and sing lots."
- "A good way of knowing what your child is thinking is by looking at what they're looking at. Shared engagement makes children feel loved and important, which is great for their learning."