There are many types of books. The key point when deciding what types of books to choose is: Introduce children to a variety of books. In this way, we widen their horizons. Here are some book types to consider.
When most dads think of reading aloud, they think of story books. These come in many types including folk tales, fairy tales, series about one character, adventures, mysteries, scary stories, and tales of growing up.
What about comic books? Donít say no to comics without looking at some. Many people who today are excellent readers, as well as some famous writers, started off reading comics. What is good about comics? The pictures help children understand the words, the exciting plots motivate children to want to know what comes next and the fact that most comics come in series, such as Spiderman, gives children much more to read after they finish one comic book. Wan Innís son Julian took a big step toward learning French by reading the French version of the Astrix comic book series.
Yes, there are some junk comics, full of violence and other types of content may not want children to be reading. However, many other types of books (not to mention movies and television programs) contain the same type of content. At the same time, many educational texts can be found in comic book form.
Also, just because a book has drawings does not necessarily mean the book is easy to read. Comic books and other illustrated book can be for older children and adults. For example, the main character in Kayla & the Magical Tree is a pre-teen, and the bookís themes are probably beyond the comprehension of younger children.
Wordless picture books
Who says that a book needs words? Babies, toddlers, and even older children can enjoy books with only pictures or just a few words. Talk about the pictures. Make up your own stories. Also, many picture books are made of child-proof materials, such as heavy cardboard, that little hands canít tear. Plastic picture books are great for reading in the bath!
Dad reminder: You can start to read to your kids at ANY age. It's fun for the kids and dad. It really is a dad duty!
- George Jacobs, Ph.D. and Wan Loh Inn, Ed.D.
Dr. George Jacobs, Ph.D. and Dr. Wan Loh Inn, Ed.D. are the authors of many books (including "The Read Aloud Guide", textbooks for teachers and students, curriculum guides, and children's storybooks).
Find out more about reading aloud to your kids.