Books for children – developing speech and language

books for children to help develop todder's pre-schooler's toddlers preschoolers childs kids childrens children language speech parenting literacy blog early years main abc pic final edit

I make no secret of my passionate belief that reading books to your children every day helps to develop their speech and language skills.  Right from when our daughter was born and was only just home from hospital as a newborn, I would read her cloth books while she happily kicked and gurgled under her play gym and at feeding time, in fact any time really.  Then she moved on to board books and took her abc’s and her 123’s in her stride.

Fast forward to 5 years later and there is no denying that all of this has stood her in very good stead with her literacy.  While in her first year at school, she has learnt her phonics, learnt to read and write and just recently her teacher told us that she is doing ‘fantastic’ with her spelling.  All of this reading to her and with her in the foundations of her early years can surely be no coincidence…

So, which books are recommended to develop your child’s speech and language skills?

From read-aloud, nursery rhyme and picture books like ‘A Child’s Garden of Verses’ by Robert Louis Stevenson…

books to help develop todder's pre-schooler's toddlers preschoolers childs kids childrens children language speech parenting literacy blog early years 1

and books for the late talker like ‘The Einstein Syndrome’ by Thomas Sowell…

books to help develop todder's pre-schooler's toddlers preschoolers childs kids childrens children language speech parenting literacy blog early years einstein syndrome thomas sowell 1

to books about animals and classic stories like ‘Sammy: The Classroom Guinea Pig’ by Alix Berenzy…

books to help develop todder's pre-schooler's toddlers preschoolers childs kids childrens children language speech parenting literacy blog early years sammy classroom guinea pig alix berenzy 1

…and let’s not forget the role that letter blocks and flash cards play like ‘Read with Biff, Chip & Kipper: Fun with Words’…

books to help develop todder's pre-schooler's toddlers preschoolers childs kids childrens children language speech parenting literacy blog early years biff chip kipper flashcards 1

Indeed, we used flashcards when our little bear first started her reading and it helped immensely.  It also helped that we had picked up the flashcards through hubby’s work book club that happened to be the same series that our bear’s class was using – the Biff, Chip and Kipper series from Oxford Reading Tree.  By turning it into a game, our bear had no idea that she was learning!

Of course, along with reading books to and with your child, talking to your child is a great stepping stone to great vocab, literacy and speech.

So tell me, which books did you or do you enjoy reading with your child?  Were/are any of them the same ones that you read as a child?

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~

The Twinkle Diaries

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‘Aprons and Silverspoons’ ~ a must-read!

papery peep aprons and silverspoons mollie moran 1930s kitchen maid

To say that I found this book fascinating is an understatement.  It’s fair to say that I’m intrigued with how people used to live years ago (not all that long ago in this case, in the grand scheme of things).  I love Downton Abbey (though I haven’t seen the whole series, sadly), I love anything and everything Jane Austen related, I love reading/watching well-researched fiction and non-fiction about the class divides and how people used to live.  Way back when I was at school, I have distinct memories of a programme called ‘How We Used to Live’.

This book most certainly did not disappoint.  How times have changed!  Mollie chose to work in domestic service against working in a shop.  The only other option being the Workhouse…  which was most certainly not a good option.  As Moran re-tells, domestic service involved starting at the bottom of the ‘food chain’, literally getting down on hands and needs and scrubbing and scrubbing, and scrubbing some more.  Pretty much from dawn.

While reading this book, I found myself shuddering at the conditions that Moran and her counterparts worked in.  But do you know what really amazed me?  That it was perfectly acceptable and there was relatively little whinging done out loud.  These people just got on with it… working their fingers to the bone!

Do read the book, it’s a very easy to read and goes really well with a nice hot cup of your favourite brew and a cheeky biscuit 😉

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Consider if you were in Anne Frank’s shoes…

The theme game Anne frank outdoors

The bookcase door inside Anne Frank Huis, Amsterdam

 Picture source: free-city-guides.com

When I was younger I read ‘The Diary of Anne Frank’ and the story of Miep Gies who helped to hide the Frank family et al.  I was in awe of this young girl who yearned and ached to go outside; yearned and ached to be free.

A few years ago I had the opportunity to visit The Anne Frank House and Museum in Amsterdam.  From the minute I stepped through that concealed entrance and walked up the steps into ‘The Annex’, I was walking in her proverbial shoes (and of the other people she hid with).

I saw where she had lived, saw where she had slept, felt the atmosphere still lingering, looked out of the high window and saw the same bell tower that Anne Frank had seen.

I was humbled.  I was intrigued.  I was sad.  I was claustrophobic.  I was privileged to experience ‘The Annex’ (though not in the same way, thankfully).  I unashamedly shed a tear.     And as our tour came to an end, I walked back down the stairs, back through the concealed entrance, back out of the museum.  I walked back outside.  I was free.

I was free to take in a  lungful of fresh air.  I will try to never take the outdoors for granted again.

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