Cozy-Up This Season with Reads that Inspire Kids + Nannies
Post by Sarah Fischer
Colder winter days mean more inside time. Stay warm and spark creativity in your nanny charges by reading aloud and turning those stories into meaningful opportunities for conversation and creation.
Make the experience of reading together more rich than a simple story time by selecting books that match the unique interests of your nanny kids. As a nanny or private educator, you’re already well acquainted with your local library branch. Use that familiarity to your advantage and check in with the librarian for leads on great young adult chapter books, picture books about space, or fantasy books for early readers. As your nanny kids read through the season, you’ll fuel their passion for a topic or theme and inspire curiosity for new content areas.
The ritual of reading together can be magical. Create special shared meaning around the act of reading with your nanny charges using your environment and the repetition of actions. Is there a comfy armchair or nook in the home that you can designate as your reading together spot? Grab comforting objects that hold memories, such as blankets, pillows, or stuffed animals and enhance the area with these personalized reminders of warmth. Repeat actions around how you and your nanny kids approach reading together to set the time a part. Maybe you always have a snack just before reading time or take off shoes to get everyone feeling comfortable and focused. Involve your nanny charges to make choices about how to personalize the routine in ways that feel relevant for their learning styles. Once you’ve determined the space and decided what actions will lead to the best reading experience, it’s time to get reading. Use the richness of the characters, narrative, or illustrations to prompt conversation. Questions about what might happen next, how characters are feeling, or what part of the story your nanny kid found the most interesting support strong literacy skills. Avoid questions with one word answers and encourage your nanny charges to investigate, observe, and imagine.
Check out these inspiring reads when you’re cozying up for the winter:
Little Bird by Germano Zullo and Albertine: A bird and box truck, combined with bold colors, tell a story of possibility.
The Heart and the Bottle by Oliver Jeffers: Incredibly crafted collages and drawings pair well with a story about a young girl and her delicate heart.
The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein: A story perfectly designed with humans and nature at the center.
Duck, Death and The Tulip by Wolf Erlbruch: This tender story opens the door for thoughtful and simple conversations about death.