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Supporting Your Childs Development Through Reading

Updated: Mar 8, 2023

Reading with your child is an incredible way to boost their language and comprehension development, as well as a rich and rewarding opportunity to spend quality time together.

“I’m old-fashioned and think that reading books is the most glorious pastime that humankind has yet devised.”– Wislawa Szymborska

Integrating books in your bedtime reading routine is an incredible way to further support child’s language development and communication skills. Below is a guideline of how to include interaction for your younger children between 1-5 years of age.

Ages 1-3

At this age, your child may not be speaking or be capable of fully understanding sentencing. Incorporating interaction while you read together provides an opportunity for them to develop conversational skills and learn new words. If you were reading a book about dogs, this could look like:

Child: “Dog”

Parent: *Point to dog* “Yes, Dog. And the Dog says woof!”

Child: “Dog woof!”

Parent: *Point to dog* “Yes, the dog says woof!”

Ages 3-5

At this stage your child may begin speaking and understanding sentences. You can support conversational development during reading time by encouraging them to discuss what they are reading or the picture in the book. It is important to not only acknowledge these comments, but to expand as well. This may look like:

Child: “The dog is barking”

Parent: *Point to dog* “Yes, the dog is barking. It barks at cats.”

Child: “Our dog barks at shopping bags.”

Parent: “Yes, he does bark at shopping bags, and cats. He also barks when someone knocks on the door.”

If notice that your child is unable to focus during reading time, frequently loses their place, or struggles to engage in these interactions during the specified age bracket (or are worried about their milestones) contact us here at Outcomes Therapy and speak with one of our qualified occupational therapist for support.

Connect with us at, email us at or phone us at 0466 994 500

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