story time

The benefits of story time with your child.

Story Time

Children love story time! They love listening to stories over and over. Parents/Caregivers, don’t be fooled if you have older children (middle school & highschool). They love story time too! Pick up their favorite book and you will see that no matter what age, your child will sit and listen to a story.

Benefits of story time for elementary aged children:

  • Stories help develop a child’s imagination.
  • Stories help model language for children.
  • Stories help nurture a child’s listening abilities.
  • Stories help children comprehend the world around them.
  • Stories expose children to a larger vocabulary than the spoken word.
  • Stories introduce and reinforce concepts such as colors, shapes, letters, etc.
  • Stories encourage a love of reading.
  • Stories allow children to hear the modeling of letter sounds and words
  • Story time allows adults to model prosody, fluency, and expression.
  • Storytime models good oral reading skills for parents and caregivers to follow.
  • Storytime can help children become successful readers and learners.
  • Storytime introduces songs, finger plays and nursery rhymes to parents that can be enjoyed at home.
  • Story time creates a social opportunity for parents and caregivers.

Here is an article that discusses the benefits and provide tips for reading to your child.

It is taken from a wonderful bilingual website called Colorín Colorado. Stay tuned for future postings about teaching Latino children Spanish in an English-centric world.

learning and kids

Vowel Extensions


In order for children to learn how to read they have to understand the language, rules, and explain why words are pronounced a particular way.

Vowels are difficult sounds to learn because children need to learn that vowels make short, long, and schwa sounds. Early literacy contains short vowel sounds, so they’re the first vowel sounds kids are taught (cat, bat, sat, mop, top).

Many of us were taught letter-sound correspondence by listening to caregivers, peers, and teachers. But as children, we don’t truly understand why vowels make different sounds. We’re taught rules such as “i before except after c” but it’s all abstract (there is an exception to this rule; stay tuned in future postings!).  The letter “y” is pronounced /ē/ (“ee”) in a two syllable word (such as baby). Why is that? Just one of many odd exceptions to the rule that the English language is full of, making it one of the hardest languages to grasp for foreign speakers.

Once  children start to make sounds, this is a great activity to do with them. You can do it daily or a few times a week. For school-aged children in the lower grades (K-2) you can make it fun and use a puppet. For upper grade children (3-5) you can have them be “the teacher/leader” and make a song or rhyme out of it. For middle school children (6-8), ask them to lead the activity as well. Record them so they can hear themselves and learn to distinguish the sounds.

What is a vowel extension:

This activity is taken from the Fundations Program created by Barbara Wilson.

Do this exercise with your child as often as you’d like and it will help them identify the vowels in isolation and in words.

Steps to teaching Vowel Extensions:

1. Say the vowel – a

2. Say the sound, but extend it and exaggerate the sound and follow the dotted line (get silly with it-little ones love this).

3. When you reach the picture of the keyword, say the keyword

4.  End with saying the sound again before moving on to the next vowel.

Let me know how this works out for your child!

Click here if unable to view below:  video