Celebrate Read Across America with Your Toddler

March 2, 2022

It is never too early to start developing your child’s early literacy skills. Although a baby’s vision may be fuzzy, his or her hearing is fully developed by birth. This means that babies actively listen to the world around them, including your words. Talking to them early and often will help babies develop an understanding of vocabulary, a crucial skill when learning to read.

Building literacy skills in your child will help them enter school ready to learn and eager to succeed. Here are some ways you can foster a love of reading in your child.


  • Make reading a habit. Read a book before bedtime, after breakfast, or before naptime. 
  • Let your child choose a book to read.
  • Invite your child to snuggle with you. Make the experience comfortable.
  • Read stories over and over again. Toddlers learn through repetition.
  • Show them the physical parts of a book. “This is the spine. Here is the cover. Feel the pages.”
  • Read books about subjects that interest your child. How about dinosaurs or insects or flowers?
  • Make books easily accessible either in the home or by visiting the library.
  • Use different voices for each character to build interest.
  • Ask your child what he thinks will happen next in the story.
  • Ask your child to describe the picture on the page. “What color is the sky? Is the bear wearing a shirt? How many birds do you see?”

For more tips to raise a reader or learn about the Read Across America initiative, please visit

Mother reads to her child.