Children’s Book Activities: Read, Create, Sing, Play

As a parent or caregiver, you can enhance your child’s learning through books, crafts, songs and activities. These few Raising Readers books are just a sample.  You can try these ideas with all sorts of other books!

In Baby Bear’s Books by Jane Yolen, Baby Bear finds all sorts of fun places to enjoy reading his storybooks.

Take your child outside to read.  Read at bedtime. Read in a cozy chair.  Share books with your child, whether you are their parent, grandparent, or other caregiver.  Read the story and ask questions about the pictures.

The story LMNO Peas by Keith Baker runs through the alphabet.

You could read the story and then sing the ABC song with your child.  Look around the room where you are reading and ask your child to find things that begin with the same letters.  Practice writing or tracing the letters with your child as an extension to the book.  Ask your child to spy different peas and what they are doing in the book.  Count the peas, depending on your child’s age, too.

The board book I Love Colors by Margaret Miller is a great book to do a color hunt.

Walk around the room after reading:  point out other things, their color, then refer back to the colors in the book.  This connects the book with the activity of finding and naming colors.  You could do a coloring activity, such as mixing a blob of yellow and red in a Ziploc freezer bag.  Have your child squish the paint in the bag, to make the new color.  Make a color collage with scraps.

The Napping House by Audrey Wood is a super read-aloud and is great for kids to find all the animals on each page.

As  you read, and they begin to follow the pattern and realize there are clues before the next animal comes, ask them who is next.  Enhance this story with your child by doing a simple animal craft or find all the different animals in their stuffed animal stash at home.  Ask them if they can find a stuffed dog, or cat, etc.  Pinterest is a great place to find simple craft ideas you can try at home.

Bob by Tracey Campbell Pearson is so much fun to read aloud to all ages of listeners.

Children love that Bob says the wrong things.  This is great for learning all the correct animal sounds, or for them to show off their prowess with what they do know.  Ask your childabout how they think Bob is feeling as he looks for someone like him?  How was the fox feeling at the end?  How would you feel?  This shares empathy, so children learn how others feel and that sometimes other people feel just like they do.   Extend with other simple activities and this author has some ready-made activities.  Check out the link on her website!

Remember, Read to your child every day.  Visit your local library and take advantage of the free resources available to parents and children.  Enjoy enhancing your child’s learning through extension activities using books!

Blog post author, Miss Amy Hand is the Head Children’s and Youth Services Librarian at Camden Public Library.

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