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About George Jacobs Ph.D. and Wan Loh Inn Ed.D.

Here are my most recent posts

Guide for Dads: Final Words – JUST DO IT !

It doesn’t take a genius to be able to see the benefits of reading aloud. And, it doesn’t take a professional actor to be able to read aloud to children. Yet most adults spend little time reading aloud to children, even their own children.


 


Why not? Why don’t we dads spend more time reading aloud to children? The main excuse we adults make is, “I’m too busy,” usually said with an exhausted, harried look of our faces. But, what are we so busy doing: watching TV, reading the newspaper, surfing the internet, trying to make a few more dollars, or spending time with our friends?


 


Can’t dads spare 15-20 minutes a day to enjoy the magic of reading with a child? We live in an increasingly impersonal world, a place where we often know more about TV characters, pop stars, and famous athletes than we do about the person living next-door or working at the next desk, sometimes more even than we know about the people living in the same home with us.


 


Reading aloud offers a path towards connecting with others. As we read and as we use the book as a tool to dialogue with children or even another adult who is listening too, we, the readers, share about ourselves and learn about the people we are reading to, as they in turn share with us. The bonds we build through this sharing are, indeed, worth their weight in gold.


 


So, go ahead, give it a try. Try to make reading aloud to a child a daily habit, even if at first, it’s only for 5-10 minutes. We guarantee you won’t regret it.


 


HAPPY READING!!


 


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.


 

Guide for Dads: Key Points to Remember About Reading Aloud

Here is a list of key points to take away after reading these articles:



  • Reading aloud nurtures a love for reading and strong bonds between readers and children. These two goals are more important than using reading aloud primarily to rush children to reading on their own or making a read aloud session into a tutorial session.


  • Children’s areas of interest and comprehension level must be kept in mind, although sometimes dads may want to try to expand those interests and that comprehension level.


  • Minimize distractions. Turn off the TV or, if that is not possible, move as far away from it as possible.


  • All children benefit from being read to. Include infants and toddlers, and don’t stop reading aloud once children can read on their own.


  • Take your time. The book isn’t the main thing. The main thing is the discussion dads have with the children based on the book.


  • Dads expand children’s skills, confidence and reading collection when they help them to produce their own reading materials.

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.


 

Guide for Dads: The Technical Side of Book Creation

Once the book is written and the illustrations are done, dads need to publish the book so that it can go on the shelf along with the other books in children’s home library. Perhaps, children can even have a special place on the shelf for the books they wrote themselves.


 


There are many ways to make self-created books, ranging from the cheap and easy to the expensive and time-consuming. Some printing shops will be happy to help us, but why not save money by doing everything ourselves with the children?


 


Here are some areas to consider:



  • Photos: These can be used instead of or in addition to drawings.


  • Collage: Another alternative to drawing is to cut out pictures and make a collage.


  • Paper: Thicker paper will last longer and coloured paper will add variety.


  • Printing: Computers offer a wide range of fonts, font sizes and colors, not to mention graphics that come with basic computer software or can be downloaded from the Internet. Also, dads can print the words on computer, leave space for drawing, and then children can add drawings or other graphics, such as cutouts from magazines, by hand.


  • Covers: These should be especially strong and durable. For example, dads can reuse cardboard. Also, they can use thick plastic for the cover.


  • Binding: Many easy ideas can work:


a.  The simplest thing to do is to make a book by folding a piece of paper.


b.  Equally easy is to put several pieces of paper together and use staples along the left side of the paper.


c.  Bookshops and stationery shops offer folders and files.


d.  Another popular idea is to punch holes along the left side of the paper, thread colorful yarn through the holes and then tie the pieces of yarn. Metal rings can also be placed through the holes.


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.


 

Guide for Dads: Children Making Their Own Books (Starting from Scratch)

Instead of using another book as a starting point, dads can help children develop more independent book ideas. Here are two suggestions:



  • Children’s experiences can be the subject of the book. For example, after children make a bowl of fruit salad or visit a park, dads can help them write a book about their adventure. Children will be able to understand this book, because they were there for the events described in the book. When Wan Inn’s children were young, her family went through phase of writing about Myself, My Family and similar topics. They also wrote about their visits to different places. Once, after eating lobster sashimi, Wan Inn’s daughter, Joanne, had a dream of the lobster coming after her! That dream inspired a story.


  • Children’s interests can lead them to explore these topics, and their explorations can be the subject of the book. For example, children can find out about games that children played during their parents’ time and then write a book showing how some of the games are played. One time, Wan Inn’s younger son, Jason, came up with a creative explanation for how zebras got their black stripes: God fell asleep after putting the animals in the oven to bake.

Now that dads have discussed finding topics for books, what about actually writing them. How much of the writing should children do? The answer is: As much as they can. The principle is to make the book the children’s book as much as possible. For example, even if dads do all the writing and most of the drawing, children can help supply ideas and color the drawings.


 


We want to be a facilitator. We want to children to develop their thinking, speaking, writing, and artistic ability to the greatest extent possible. We can do whatever children cannot. We can also offer suggestions, ask questions to prod thinking, help with vocabulary and grammar, and give lots and lots of encouragement.


 


Of course, writing is not easy, even when children use another book as a model. Writing is not easy for adults either. Let’s start small and start simple, and cherish small victories. Just one page is fine.


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.


 

Guide for Dads: Children Making Their Own Books (Starting from Other Books)

Many dads may wonder how children can write their own books, when even very few adults write books. There are several ways to make this task easy. The first trick is to use books that dads have already read to the children and to use these books as models. They are not selling these books; they are just for their own use. Therefore, there are no copyright worries.


 


Starting from other books


There are several different ways for children to start with other books and create their own books:



  • The words in the new child-create book are exactly the same, but the children add their own illustrations.


  • Children change the characters in the book by substituting their own names and the names of other people, fellow animals and places in their lives. For example, in the story Hazel’s Puppy, children can substitute their own name instead of Hazel.


  • The format is the same, but the topic is different. For example, the children use the format found in a series of books about classes children take and use that format to write a book about a class that they are taking. Thus, instead of My Violin Class, children write My Gymnastics Class or My Calligraphy Class. Or, even easier would be if children are taking a class just like one in the series, children can change that book to tell about their specific class. For instance, children who go to piano class can rewrite My Piano Class to show what happens in their class.


  • Children can write a new section for a book they already know. For instance, Kayla & the Magical Tree is more than 100 pages long. Writing a new version of that book would be a very big job. However, more manageable would be to write a new chapter. In the book, Kayla is a girl who meets many strange and marvelous creatures, such as boulders with eyes and a big mouth. The children could invent a new creature and write about Kayla’s adventure with that creature.


  • Similarly, children can change the ending or any other part of a book. They might change that part because they do not like it or because they want to add more to it. Children could even write a sequel. For example, Hazel’s Puppy ends when the puppy comes home to Hazel’s house. The book does not tell us about any of the adventures that the puppy and Hazel enjoy. Ah! A great chance to write a new book: The Adventures of the Puppy and Hazel.

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.