As a parent, it can often be tricky to choose good books for kids. There are so many colorful picture books on the market, but which ones are the best for your child? A lot depends on your child’s temperament and interests. When reading to your child, you’ll know right away whether a book has captured their interest and/or imagination.
Basic considerations for good books for kids
- Does the book offer a positive message or helpful lesson to your child?
- Does the book occasionally use words that challenge your child?
- Does the book have strong characters that impress your child?
- Does the book hold your child’s interest, and inspire questions?
Don’t be put off if your child asks questions about a book or doesn’t understand particular language! This is an excellent way for your child to learn, and asking questions means your child is engaged.
The most important aspect of any children’s book is that it inspires kids to read it over again!
Fast food books vs. healthy books
Kids may have an appetite for books based on characters they see on TV or in movies. However, as a parent, it’s important to determine whether these are just marketing ploys, rather than substantial and positive books for your kids.
There’s nothing wrong with “comfort books” for bedtime, but it’s important to provide your child with challenging books as well that provoke thought, growth and discovery.
Encourage a dialogue with your child. Let them speak their mind about a book. If they like or don’t like a book, try to get them to explain why. This will help you understand how particular books affect your children.
If you share books with kids that YOU loved as a child, don’t be upset if the book doesn’t have the same appeal to your kids. Times change and children change, and kids often want to discover for themselves what inspires and excites them.
What do you like most about the story?
Sometimes it’s the pictures that draw in a child. Sometimes it’s the text. It’s always fun to see what particular part of a story excites a child.
Don’t forget to ask your child what they love best about a story – or what they dislike the most. Not only will you learn about your child, your child will learn about him/herself.
Book discussions can definitely enrich your relationship with your child!