March 2014

English Parent Reading Guide

Ranger Rick Jr March 2014 CoverOur monthly reading guides help enhance your Ranger Rick Jr. subscription by recommending ways you can use the magazine to encourage a strong foundation for your child’s literacy development.

There are a lot of engaging facts about animals in this month’s issue of Ranger Rick Jr. Our focus article this month, Ricky and Pals in The Cool Pool, is sure to get everyone excited for warm weather! The story also reminds us that there is so much to learn about animals during the spring season. The story introduces animals that lay eggs and change their habitat as well! Perhaps your child would be interested in exploring more about specific amphibians or other small pond animals. This is a great opportunity to expose your child to some nonfiction literature in order to learn more. Good examples are: Fun Facts about Frogs! by Carmen Bredeson and From Tadpole to Frog by Wendy Pfeffer. Ask a librarian for other books that meet your child’s interests, too!

Not all books about animals have to be nonfiction. Storybooks can also be exciting for children. Two recommendations are: Plip-Plop Pond! by Kaaren Pixton and several The Frog and Toad books written by Arnold Lobel. It is important to read with your children for them to learn to appreciate the way books and magazines can increase their imagination.

Also in relation to this month’s Ricky and Pals story, talk about an experience in which your child was very excited about something, but then it ended up working out a different way in the end. To his/her surprise, the way it turned out was really awesome and no longer disappointing! Ricky and Flora thought they were going swimming, but they ended up having even more fun looking at all the animals in the spring pool!

Work with your children at their level while reading this story. Sound out animal names together, giving him/her as much time as needed. If your child can write, have him/her write the name of an animal, including one or two words describing it. If your child is not comfortable writing, you could write while your child tells you the descriptive words. An activity to build on this concept and work on reading is to create a “fishing” game:

Cut out the shapes of animals that live in a spring pool. Write the name of it on one side.

Then, attach a paper clip to each animal and place it in a bag with the name face down.

Tie a string around a small magnet to use as the “fishing pole.”

Have your child “fish” for the animals. When one gets caught on the magnet, have your child read the word, sounding out the sound of each letter.

Have fun reading with your child this month—your child is sure to enjoy it even more!

Prepared by Ellie Tunison

Prekindergarten Reading Encouragement Project (PREP) Intern

Early Childhood Education Major, University of Delaware

PREP – Helping childhood literacy one family at a time.