Maximizing the potential of your reading corner
At first glance, it seems obvious that the main purpose of your reading corner is to provide children of all ages with the chance to develop an interest in books. However, by manipulating books, children develop many other aspects, such as language and cognitive skills, motor skills, their senses, their imagination, and so much more.
To make children want to visit your reading corner time and time again, your reading corner must be inviting. It must therefore be warm and cozy as well as inspire calm and relaxation so children can use it to unwind and withdraw from the group when they feel the need to be alone.
Here is a list of things to consider. They will help guarantee your reading corner is cozy, calm, intimate, and most of all, an area that children want to explore.
- Set up your reading corner far from distractions and other activity corners.
- Create a permanent reading corner so children have continuous access to books.
- Delimit your reading corner to separate it from the rest of your daycare. The use of curtains or a small play tent can represent good ways to fulfill this goal.
- Decorate the walls within your reading corner with posters (like the ones in libraries) or children's artwork.
- Offer a wide selection of books adapted to the ages and interests of the children in your group.
- Create a special "book of the week" display to highlight a book linked to your current theme.
- Provide a variety of written material (magazines, books, flyers, newspapers, etc.).
- Make sure books are accessible by storing them on shelves or inside bins at children's level.
- Provide different writing and letter-related activities (alphabet puzzles, magnetic letters and a baking sheet, paper and crayons, alphabet stencils, dry-erase markers and a whiteboard, etc.).
- Offer photo albums containing pictures of the children in your group and their family members.
- Select furniture items that will make it possible for children to sit comfortably in your reading area. Keep in mind that some will like lying down on the floor while others will prefer sitting in an armchair or on a comfortable couch. Many children will appreciate sitting on cushions, pillows, small mats, or footstools.
- Adequate lighting is necessary, but choosing lights that can be dimmed can be interesting.
- Provide a CD player and headphones children can use with book and CD sets or to listen to calm music.
- Let children set a stuffed animal in your reading corner. They will enjoy reading to it or using it as a mascot.
- Involve children in the setup of your reading corner so they can make it their own.
- Regularly rotate the books that are available in your reading corner to stimulate children's interest in the area.
Maximizing the potential of your reading corner is important. These tricks will help you get started on the right path.