The fifth secret to success in reading to children is sharing books.

Sharing books means looking at books together. This could be a picture book, a storybook, or a chapter book. Discuss the cover, the title and any pictures on the cover. Encourage your child to make predictions about what will happen in the story. Read the story for fun and talk about what you read.

As you read through the story for the first time, read it for enjoyment.

Use expression in your voice. Change voices for the different characters.

Match the pace to fit the story. Run your finger under the words as you read to younger children to help develop concepts of print such as the left to right/ top to bottom directionality, speech to print match and return sweep when moving to the next reading line. After sharing the story, talk about how it relates to your children’s life.

You may wish to select a book with an accompanying audio recording. Stop the tape to look at the pictures carefully. Next, allow the child to read with the tape. You may wish to follow this reading by reading the story without the tape.

It is a good idea to reread the story, especially if it is a story your child likes. Take the time to notice the details in the pictures. When rereading, try leaving out a word.

Ask your child to supply the missing word. In a book with rhymes, leave out the last word in a line. In a story with lines that repeat the same words, have your child say the words each time they are repeated.

An example of repeating word patterns is in the story, The Three Bears: “Who’s been sitting in my chair?” Another way to do this is to leave out the character names, places or objects that appear often in the book.

Your child will enjoy filling in the missing words.

Reading aloud to children is a wonderful experience for the reader and the child. However, one in four adults in Muskogee County do not possess sufficient skills necessary to do so.

The Muskogee Public Library offers free tutoring to adults who desire to learn to read, spell and write proficiently. Training for volunteer tutors is also available.

If you are interested in learning more about these free services, please contact

Janette Rose in the Adult Literacy Office at 682-665, Ext. 314. Office hours are from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday.

React to this story:


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