Reading Activity Calendar

February

1Reader CornerMake a small reading corner for your child. Put pillows and a soft blanket in a corner of the room where you are working. Add some of your child’s favorite books, or some new books, for them to look at.
2Groundhog DayWill the groundhog see his shadow today? If so, that means six more weeks of winter. Encourage your child to make up his own story about a holiday that predicts how much longer winter will last. He can pick a favorite animal to be the “hero,” and imagine a tradition like the one on Groundhog Day.
3More Reader Corner IdeasAsk your child to choose a book, look at the pictures, and tell you the story in his own words. Give him lots of encouragement for looking at books independently.
4Today is Weatherman’s Day!Look at the weather outside, and talk about different weather words, like sunny, cloudy, cold, or rainy. What words best describe what the weather is like today?
5Family ConversationMealtime is a great time for children to learn about group conversations. Ask your child a question like “How was your day today?” Then like “Tell me more about your new friend at school.” Encourage everyone to join in.
6What Was It About?After viewing a television program with your child, talk about it! Ask them questions like, "did you like it?" and "who was your favorite character?" Tell them your opinions about the show too.
7Black History MonthLearn more about Black History Month with this Ask the Expert Q&A with Henry Louis Gates.
8Random Acts of Kindness WeekRandom Acts of Kindness Week begins today. Leave your child sweet notes around the house, and help him write some of his own — for you, other siblings or family members, friends, or anyone who could use a cheerful note.
9Cleaning HelperInvite your child to help clean up after a meal at home. For example, he can clear the dishes off the table, clean the crumbs, and then wipe the table. Tell and show your child how to do each step carefully.
10So Much to SeeThe view from the car provides lots and lots of places and things to name. As you name the things you pass, give some information that relates the place or thing to your child. For example, say “That’s where we bought your new shoes!” or “That tree is bigger than our favorite tree at the park!”
11Read to Your Child DayPick a book — a new one from the library or an old favorite — and curl up together to read, look at the pictures, and talk about the story. Let your child pick the book and where to sit.
12Pretend Party.Children love to play pretend. Invite your child to have a pretend birthday party. Provide paper and markers or crayons so she can make the invitations. “Who will you invite?” Write down the names of the friends she wants to invite. She can copy these names onto the invitations. Visit Birthday Parties on PBS Parents for more ideas.
13More Pretend PartyThen decide on the menu. Explain that the menu means what food she will have at the party, just like the menu at a restaurant. “What will you wear to the party?” If possible, let her dress up. Then have a special snack and a party for two!
14Valentine’s DayGather construction paper, markers and crayons, ribbons, and any other decorations to make valentines. Have your child draw hearts or favorite book characters on the construction paper. Then ask your child what the valentines’ messages should say, like “I love you” or “Be mine.” Help him write the words inside the cards.
15President’s DayIf your child was president, what rules would he make? Together, write down the list and have your child decide on what rules are most important. Are there any of these “rules” that you can use in your household, like saying thank you and being polite?
16Family PhotosChildren love to look at photos of people they know “Who’s that?” Wait for your child to respond and then follow up. “That’s Grandma with your cousins Keisa and Maria!” Point to the people in the photo as you name them. Your child will want to look at the pictures again and again.
17Thinking of YouAfter looking at family photos yesterday, sit down with your child to write an e-mail or note to relatives. Let your child communicate in pictures or in words that you help him write. If he draws a picture, ask him what it’s about and include a description in the note.
18Caption MeNow take a look at some favorite family photos with your child in them. Ask him to tell you about the photos. “Where were we that day?” “What were we doing?” “Was it fun?” Then write a line or two to accompany each photo.
19Banana Bread DayFind a recipe, either online or from a cookbook, to bake with your child. As you gather the ingredients, name the item and show your child the words on the package. Look over the directions together, and involve your child in as many steps as possible, and let him mash the banana by himself.
20What Happens Next?Make a plan with your child for T.V. watching. Connect this plan to other events in his day and introduce words that describe time. For example tell him “First, we are going to the grocery store. Next we are going to eat lunch. Then you can watch your favorite T.V. show. After that, we are going to turn off the television and go to the park.”
21After T.V. TimeWhen your child’s favorite T.V. show ends, ask him more about the characters on the show. “What are they doing now?” “Do they eat dinner like you?” “Do they have bath time like you?” Help your child use his imagination to take the stories of the characters further.
22List TimeAt breakfast this morning, have your child make a list of all the things he wants — and needs — to do today, like have play time, eat lunch, and brush his teeth. You may need to help him write it down. As you do each item, cross it off the list.
23Polar Bear DayUsing the Internet and/or the library, find pictures of and information about polar bears. Have your child draw pictures of polar bears, and then ask him about the pictures like “Does your polar bear have a name?” “Is he a nice bear?” “What is your bear doing in this picture?”
24Doctor’s Office VisitIn the waiting room, choose a simple book or a family magazine with a lot of large pictures. Make a short comment about each picture and then relate it to your child’s life. As you look at a magazine picture of a woman swimming, you can say “Look, she’s swimming; swimming in the water. You like to swim in the tub, don’t you?”
25Body Parts RhymeOnce inside the exam room, you may have to undress your child before the doctor arrives. Introduce your child to the names of her body parts through a rhyming game. “Belly belly, jelly jelly, baby has a jelly belly!”
26Saying GoodbyeAs you get your child dressed and ready to leave the doctor’s office, sum up what the doctor did during the exam. “The doctor listened to your heart and looked in your ears.” Then, invite her to say “Bye-bye” to everyone as you leave and say goodbye yourself. “Goodbye Doctor, thank you for giving me my check-up.” “Goodbye nurse, thank you for weighing me.”
27Window ShoppingAs you walk through the mall, name each store and talk to your child about the things you see in the window. “Look at all those clothes in the clothing store.” When you see something very interesting, stop for a minute. “Let’s look at the puppies in the window of the pet store!”
28Shopping ListDid you buy anything at the mall yesterday? Have your child name the things you bought — and looked at — and draw pictures of the items to help him associate names with objects.
PBS KIDS: Raising Readers