They say the best way to get good at something is to start young. One national program is taking this idea to heart and providing by encouraging future readers to start young. Very young in fact.
Imagination Library is a free program available to children 5 and under nationwide that encourages kids to get started reading early. By registering your child, you’ll receive one children’s book a month until they turn 5. Not only is this a great way to get these resources into homes that might not otherwise have had them, it makes for an exciting event and anticipation of the arrival of a new book for the month.
While these young future bookworms aren’t reading the books on their own yet (that’s what parents are for!), introducing them to books at an early age is a great way to get the concepts of reading into their heads. The program uses a structured approach by gradually introducing new concepts every year. For example, the emphasis on text is limited in early years, allowing young readers to focus on the images and tactile sensation of the book. As the program continues, ideas like values and character are introduced, as well as conflict, and even rhyme. By year 5, the emphasis is on preparing the young readers for applying these skills to school.
The program has regional directors throughout the country whom you can contact to bring the program to your area if it’s not already there. For more information on the program and how to bring it to your area, check out the Imagination Library’s website. And for more information on how to encourage young readers, check out our blog.