Many fantasy story books for children are in the form of chapter books. The books that are designed to keep a child engrossed when they are very young are light on text but very heavy on illustrations, sketches and pictures. When they reach an age where they have the ability to comprehend more, they can switch over to these wonderful chapter books. Chapter books engross a child in a story, long enough that it can actually be broken up into chapters but the chapters are not long enough to bore the child who at this stage may still have a short attention span. Many children transition into chapter books when they are around six or seven years old, but not all children are the same. How do you know when your child is ready for fantasy story books?
This is not a difficult question to answer; basically it depends on how long he or she can sit still. If they fidget and want to get off your lap, it’s too early. Here is the rub; maybe you have chosen a book that is not right for them, even worse, maybe you need to hone your skills in reading. Children can be kept involved if you bring them into the picture, how would it be if you left the story line and added them to the cast?
As a parent, ask yourself these questions, the answers will help you decide if your child is ready to move up to chapter books and fantasy story books.
1. Does your child listen quietly for 30 minutes when you read to them?
2. Does your child enjoy the text as well as the pictures; do they ask questions about the words?
3. Does your child relate to the character, can they see themselves in the story?
4. Do they ask for the same book over and over?
5. Do they question the language; do they ask what certain words mean?
If the answers are yes to these simple questions then your child is ready to move on from simple story books that are basically pictures to more in depth books that can keep them more engrossed in learning. If they are not yet ready, don’t worry, they soon will be.
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