Tag Archives: reading

Helping Young Children Learn Language

Quinn Dombrowski baby reading

Being an au pair is an important role in a child’s life. When you are caring for young children up to 45 hours per week, there are lots of opportunities to help them learn language. Many host parents are eager for their children to be exposed to more than just English. If this is true of your host parents, you can try the suggestions below, in both English and your native language.

Below are a few tips to start with, for more ideas, check out Ready at Five.

  • Read – Read to them daily, point out pictures and ask questions. Even if they can’t answer the questions, this is still modeling conversation.
  • Talk – Point out objects around them, names of their body parts, explain what you are doing and places you are going. Long before babies can speak, they benefit greatly from being spoken to.
  • Sing – You can sing childhood classics or make up your own silly songs. If you are looking for song ideas, HERE is a great website with lists of songs, lyrics and links to youtube videos* of the songs.  Children’s music is also available at the public library and even on iTunes.
  • Words – As children move from toddlers to preschoolers begin to point out written language.
  • Writing – Toddlers and preschoolers can begin to learn pre-writing skills by drawing with crayons or doing finger paints.

*The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends no screen time for babies under 18 months of age. For children 18 months to 5 years they recommend no more than 1 hour of high quality content. You can play the songs on youtube for the audio and not necessarily show the screen to the child.

Photo: Quinn Dombrowski (Flickr)

Celebrate Dr. Seuss' Birthday with Reading

On this day in 1904, Dr. Seuss was born.  Today is a great day to share a favorite Dr. Seuss book with a child or let them share their favorite Dr. Seuss book with you.

Celebrate his birthday with reading and fun activities.


Check out the Seussville website for an endless selection of:

  • online activities
  • print and play games & activities
  • list of events in your area


Summer Reading Programs


It’s not too late to register the kids for Summer Reading Programs at your local library.  Many offer programs with incentives for kids who keep track of their summer reading.  There are also story times, puppet shows and other events held at the libraries over the summer.  Another great place to stay cool in the hot weather.

Check out your county’s library website for details:

Montgomery County Public Library

Prince Georges County Public Library

Anne Arundel County Public Library