Tips for Reading to Everyone at Once
Reading to kids of different ages and stages can be wonderful, but it is definitely a different than the cozy experience of reading to just one. Making reading to children of multiple ages a successful and enjoyable experience means making a few adjustments and paying attention to the ways it is different from reading to one child alone.

Adjust your attitude. Reading out loud to a group is more like stage acting than screen acting: You must be aware of your audience; you have to wait for the laughter to stop; you have to inject extra energy when things seem dead. This means sometimes using dynamic reading techniques to engage your audience, and sometimes dumping them by the wayside.

Negotiate the lap treaty. Maybe the child off the lap can act out the book you’re reading, or have the privilege of choosing the next book.

Tailor participation to each child’s level. Older children can answer your questions. Try other dynamic techniques with younger children – like having a preverbal child “eat” all the food on the page or follow the mouse with her finger.

Is it as easy as reading to one child? No, not at all. Is it as fun? Well, it’s different – and maybe it’s more fun, when they can all act it out together, or talk about it later, bringing up the shared language and experience that you have enjoyed together as a family.

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Best Books for Reading to Siblings