Dear Parents and Guardians:
This month you can help your child enjoy Ranger Rick Jr. by reading two articles with him or her—the first about how animals greet each other, and the second about learning to recognize shapes.
Ways to Say Hello!
Read pages 26 to 31 to show your child the various ways different animals greet each other. Ask him or her which of the animal greetings are similar to the ways humans say, “Hello!” Do any of the animals greet each other in ways humans never would? (Many people say, “Hi!” with a kiss or a hug. But humans would never nip the way zebras do!)
Explain to your child that people in different parts of the world have different customs. The two boys on the left live in the United States. They greet each other with a handshake, which is common here and in much of the world. The boy on the right lives in Thailand. People who live there greet each other by placing their hands together in front of their face and saying the word, “Sw-wad-dee.” (For more about human diversity, read Children Just Like Me: A Unique Celebration of Children Around the World by Anabel Kindersley and Barnabas Kindersley, created in collaboration with UNICEF.)
Finding familiar objects in an article or book is a good way to interest your child in reading. You can do this with shapes, letters, and numbers. Write the number 34 on a piece of paper and ask your child to find that number at the bottom of a page in Ranger Rick Jr.
After you turn to page 34, do the “Green Time” activity with your child. Ask him or her, “How many circles can you find in this picture?” As your child points to each circle, keep count out loud. (You can also keep track by drawing lines on a separate piece of paper as your child counts.) I found 39 circles, including the apples on the tree, the girl’s glasses, the children’s eyes, and many more.
If this activity was fun for your child, ask him or her to find shapes in the room. Pictures, windows, and tables can be rectangles or squares. A clock, light, or coin may be a circle. If possible, take your child outside and see how many shapes he or she can find on a walk.
Every page of Ranger Rick Jr. is enjoyable when you read it with children.
Mike Wilson, PREP Founder
PREP – Helping childhood literacy one family at a time.