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Bring favorite books and magazines wherever you go. While it’s tempting to provide your children with electronic games and e-readers, be sure to alternate electronic media with lots of opportunities to read print books.

Here are some everyday opportunities to encourage reading:

  • Car trips: Encourage your kids to spot words and letters; for example, billboards, store signs, traffic signs and signals, etc. You can turn it into a game by seeing who can find the letter B. Older children can find the entire alphabet…and you can challenge them to find the letters in order from A to Z.
  • Errands: Keep books or magazines in your car, diaper bag, or backpack to pull out whenever you’re going to be in one place for a while. Even if you can’t finish a book, read a few pages or discuss some of the pictures.
  • Grocery shopping: While shopping, ask your preschooler to “read” pictures on boxes and tell you about them. Older children can read the prices of the products you are choosing.
  • The doctor’s office: Bring a book of your own, since the magazines or books in the doctor’s office are probably contaminated with germs.
  • Cooking: You can read recipes aloud to younger kids, and older kids can assist you as you cook by telling you how much flour to measure, etc.
  • Mail: Ask relatives and friends to send your child letters. Help your child create letters or draw pictures to send back to relatives and family friends.
  • Cleaning: While you work around the house, ask your child to name the products you are using to clean; such as, vacuum, broom, dust pan, rag, toilet brush, paper towels, garbage can, garbage bag, etc. If your child is just learning to talk, you name the object and have your child repeat it.