You probably have a morning routine. It might involve brushing teeth, taking a shower, and savoring that first cup of coffee. While I get ready in the morning, I usually watch, or just listen, to the Today Show. At the time I tune in, the hosts are usually out on the plaza, schmoozing with the frantic fans waving their signs announcing “It’s my birthday” or “Hi Mom!” This morning, just as I switched off the blow-dryer, I heard words familiar to any parent, teacher, or early childhood educator: “The Very Hungry Caterpillar.” This timeless piece of children’s literature by Eric Carle holds a special place in my heart. The segment announced a special event today called Read for The Record, an international campaign to bring children together with valued grown-ups in their lives to read the same book, on the same day, in communities all over the world.
The guests on the segment shared with the world what we early childhood professionals already know, children acquire critical language skills well before they get to school. Reading with children, sharing books, is one simple and very important thing that adults can do to support language development in children right from birth.
So, read with children. Today. And tomorrow, and the next day. You get the idea.