When parents read with their toddler, it's a great chance to share attention, fun and cuddles, and reinforce a warm, loving bond between parent and child.
All of these benefits help make strong brain connections in baby for language, and will help them learn to love books and learning for life.
On page 23 of the SKIP Whakatipu booklet Te Pihinga 3, under ‘Love and warmth’ in ‘Ngā tohu whānau’, we’re reminded to ‘Share lots of love and time with our tamaiti, playing, talking, reading, singing and having fun together’.
Here are some other relevant pages in Te Pihinga 3 to explore with whānau:
- Page 8 — ‘Te hinengaro mīharo’:
‘Baby’s experiences build new connections in his brain. These become memories. The more positive the experiences, the happier the memories.’
- Page 10 — ‘Ngā mahi a pēpi’:
‘Let pēpi take the lead when you read pukapuka together. She may start to:
- Like the same pukapuka over and over again
- Choose one she wants and give it to you to read to her.’
- Page 15 — ‘Pēpi says’:
‘I’m starting to use more words and my whānau know what I like and don’t like.
‘I have my favourite pukapuka and recognise and respond to the pictures.’
- Page 16 — ‘Pēpi says’:
‘My whānau know that playing and lots of love is exactly what my brain and wairua need.’
- Page 17 — ‘Whānau say’:
‘We try and make playing together a regular part of every day.’
- Page 18 — ‘Whānau say’:
‘He understands lots and is starting to use more kupu [words] to show us what he wants, needs and is interested in.’
‘We are giving pēpi a world rich in language every day by describing, responding, confirming, adding and modelling — “bathe them in te reo”.’
- Page 21 — ‘Te hinengaro mīharo’:
‘Connections form best when pēpi sees and hears you kōrero.’
- Page 28 — ‘Pakiwaitara’:
Te ika-a-Māui — try telling or reading this story to pēpi.
On page 6 of the SKIP Thinking about Parenting booklet we are reminded about staying positive, with the ‘Parent tip’ that says, ‘Try and say five positive things for every negative one!’
On page 4 of the SKIP booklet Tips for under 5s in the list of ‘Ten basics for a firm and fair approach’, number 2 suggests:
‘Try to do something they like with them every day.’
Ask the whānau:
- How do these ideas match your child’s behaviour at the moment?
- What changes have you noticed?
- Why do you think that’s happening?
- How has this affected you and your whānau?
- Have you noticed your child becoming more interested in books?
- How do they respond when you read together?
- Are there any ways you might access more books for you and your toddler to enjoy?
- What times with your child have been exciting, fun or made you celebrate?
- Have you had challenges with your child?
- What would you like to talk about?
- What more would you like to find out about?
How does this relate to the SKIP resources?
Baby Wall Frieze - Pānuitia taku tino kōrero anō anō - read my favourite story again and again
Six things children need -Te hanga ao tōtika, ao haumaru - structured and secure world