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Every Child Ready to Read: Playing Tips

Play is widely acknowledged as the true work of a child, but how can we honor that in our busy lives? You may feel compelled to find as many events as possible for your family to enjoy together, and attending a storytime or wandering a museum are great activities. In addition, building in time for unstructured play will give your child the tools they need to succeed in kindergarten.

Creating cardboard arcade games at a Maker program


  • Unstructured play encourages sharing, problem solving and creativity – these are all critical school and life skills.
  • Play allows a child to develop social skills. Play in public spaces allows children to find new friends with diverse backgrounds.


  • Use cardboard boxes, tin foil and other low cost materials to unlock your child’s imagination.
  • Offer your child plenty of time to play in public parks and libraries. This is a chance for your child to learn through the valuable work of play.

Playing is one of five activities you can incorporate into your daily routine to help your child get ready to read. These activities are part of an initiative called Every Child Ready to Read that is rooted in public libraries as cornerstones of early literacy in communities.

Angela is a Children’s & Teen Librarian at CLP – Squirrel Hill. She is an extremely slow reader and bicyclist, but really loves both.

Enjoy a storytime and then stay to play!

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