High Five: Nonfiction

High Five keeps parents and children coming back to Chandler Public Libraries, in person or not! High Five is an early literacy promotion that introduces five key concepts: Talk, Sing, Read, Write and Play. Read on to learn a new tip for making reading fun – with nonfiction!

Children are naturally curious about the world and how it works. Following their interests is a great way to make building literacy skills fun. If they enjoy LEGOs for example, you can get one of the building idea books offered by the library. If they like princesses and knights, find books with amazing diagrams of castles.

You don’t always have to read a nonfiction book start to finish the way that you would a fiction book. Go to a specific section or browse the pictures and read captions that interest your child. Don’t worry if you don’t know the answers to their questions. Think of it as an opportunity to show your child that learning is a lifelong adventure and share the process with them.

Other nonfiction books have more of a narrative structure with a beginning, middle and end, which lends itself to a more typical storytime. You may find that picture books blur the line between fiction and nonfiction, and some informational books can be found in the fiction section. Bones, Bones, Dinosaur Bones, is a great book for toddlers that shows the jobs of paleontologists and includes the names of many dinosaurs. How Do You Take a Bath? is a great book for preschoolers with playful rhymes and silly comparisons between animals and people.

Look for books with vivid and interesting pictures, or topics that are unusual or funny. For example, National Geographic’s Little Kids First Big Book series has great photographs that will inspire your child’s curiosity and wonder. Have you ever wondered where all the poop at the zoo goes? What Do They Do with All That Poo will answer all your questions. The topic is automatically a hit, but it also offers a peek behind the scenes.

Books that promote interaction, like guessing, are a great way to draw your child into the story. Who Has this Tail? lets children practice using their background knowledge about animals before revealing the answer. Other books like Do Not Lick this Book offer a more physically interactive element while teaching the preschool set about microbes.

Enjoy the journey of discovery with your kids and get ready to explore the universe with them!