4 Tips on choosing age appropriate books





4 Tips on choosing age appropriate books

We’ve all heard how important it is to read to your child every day. It helps them grow academically and is one of the greatest ways to help them develop language skills, and a love for the written and spoken word. But if you’ve ever gone looking for new books for your child, you’ll have noticed that there are hundreds available to choose from, and it can get very overwhelming knowing what to pick and what is age appropriate. 

There are some great hints and tips out there to help you choose age appropriate books for your children to help them both develop their literacy and language skills, and to meet their interests. Let’s take a look at some of the best ones.

Know Your Child’s Reading Level

Reading level is just as important as age when choosing appropriate books for children. As with everything, children will be at various reading levels when compared to their siblings or friends - some children may have a reading level above their age while others struggle with reading. 

There is this great online tool called Lexile which can help you find books based on your child’s reading level, age, grade and interests. It is important however to keep in mind that tools like Lexile are just starting points; they aren’t perfect but they will give you a good idea on books to try out with your child. 

Use the PICK Method

One way of getting your child interested in books is to allow them to choose their own book based on the PICK method - that is, purpose, interest, comprehend and knowledge. Your child should be able to define why they want to read the book, whether it interests them, if they can understand what they are reading, and whether they know most of the words used within the book. 

Choose Engaging Books

If you remember back to your favourite books when you were a child, you’ll likely remember that they were engaging and that the storyline, particularly when older, captured your imagination. Your child will be looking for the same engagement in the books you or they choose. A book that holds their interests and makes them ask questions after they read the book has done its job well. Look out for books that allow you to extend learning into other activities - researching similar topics and facts and re-enacting activities like building cubby houses. 

Research Time

It’s understandable that you don’t always have time to do research before you go shopping. You might have some spare time and decide to browse the bookshop, or a book catches your eye in your local department store. If you haven’t had time to research titles, it is a good idea to consider things like:

  • Are the age guidelines on the book appropriate for your child?
  • What will your child learn from the book?
  • Is the subject matter appealing and appropriate?
  • Are the illustrations and story appealing - will they engage your child?

If you are wanting to add to your child’s book collection but aren’t sure what to buy, talking to your child’s early learning educator is a great idea. Quality early learning centres, like Treasured Tots, will have a range of age appropriate books that are read to children daily and that your child can interact with. Your child’s educator will be able to give you an idea of the types of stories your child is currently finding appealing. 

There is no doubt it can be difficult to find interesting and age appropriate books for children. You may wish to look for books that will take them through a couple of literacy development periods, the first being a book that you can read to them. This book will then become one they can read, with help, back to you. Finally, it will become a book they can happily read on their own. 

There are so many benefits to reading to your children. Age appropriate books will give them the chance to learn more about what they are interested in, expand their literacy and language skills, and learn to love both the written and spoken word. Whether you choose to go book shopping on your own, or let your child pick a book from the shelf, reading is a great way to bond with your child, whatever their age. 

If you need advice on choosing the best books for your child, we’d love to invite you to speak with us at Treasured Tots Early Education. For a tour of our centres in Mandurah, Fremantle and Bibra Lake, get in touch. Treasured Tots Early Education


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Child Care & Day Care Centres In Mandurah , Western Australia