Play isn't always just fun. Play leads to learning. Every experience your child has—getting dressed, eating, playing, etc.—helps him or her learn about the world and concepts like cause and effect. Children will find it easier to read words they have heard and used, and words about things and experiences familiar to them.
- Give your child plenty of opportunities to play. Unstructured play time encourages them to make up stories and use their imaginations. Puppets and stuffed animals are great for this.
- Look at a book together. Don’t read the words; instead, have your child make up his or her own story based on the pictures.
- Kids don’t need expensive toys. Use everyday items such as boxes, paper towel tubes, pieces of cloth, balls and blocks, and see what your child does with them.