Beyond The Book
1. Use vocabulary from a favourite book in everyday situations
This first example involves taking vocabulary from a book that your child loves and using it in an everyday situation to assist with learning. If you have discussed the meaning of the word ‘delicious’ with your child when reading Fabulous Pie, you can model this when cooking together in play in order to provide a concrete example of what this word means. This is fantastic because the relationship is reciprocal in that we can bring in the real-life example when we are reading the book again e.g. ‘the pie looks delicious – just like those cookies we made together yesterday’.
2. Use familiar stories to enrich play
As another example, you can use stories that your child is familiar with in order to enrich their play. Many little ones enjoy baby play such as feeding the baby and putting it to sleep, but that can get a little repetitive and might not provide the best opportunity for language learning. What if instead the baby gets lost like in Baby Elephant Gets Lost? Now we can bring in a play script around looking for the baby. We can find other toys and talk about things that are similar or different to the baby we are looking for (semantic features) and talk about our feelings as well as what the baby might be feeling.
3. Use favourite books to motivate your child
Finally, using themes from a book that your little one loves can help them to feel more motivated when working on an activity that might be a bit tricky. For example, if your child has difficulty tying their shoelaces and you have noticed that they are getting discouraged during practice, you can try leveraging their love of stories like Jack and the Beanstalk and create a shoe lacing activity where we need to lace our way up the beanstalk to help Jack get to the top.