Sunday Post: Captivating…Reading Builds Vocabulary

Sunday Post: Captivating

Jake at Time after Time has a Sunday Post Challenge…today’s theme is CAPTIVATING.

The dictionary definition of captivating: attracting, influencing and holding by excellence or charm.



The excellence of a book is captivating.

Fishing Jeremy looking up at Grammy

The charm of a child is captivating.


What captivates you?


Captivate your child by reading excellent picture books. Studies show that children who are read to every day have greater success in school. They enter kindergarten understanding 20,000 words or more of vocabulary as opposed to 5000 words or less. And the children who are behind almost NEVER make up the gap.

“In 1950 the average spoken vocabulary of a child entering first grade was 4000 words. By 1990 this figure had dropped to 1000 words. Why? Because children are not read to and do not have very much quality interaction with their parents. Plus they do not pick up new words at play with their peers. And it is hard for two tired, working parents or a single parent to do much with their children at the end of the day. Many kids are simply placed in front of the TV while mom and/or dad get supper ready.” – Yale-New Haven Teacher’s Institute

Show Me How! Build Your Child’s Self-Esteem Through Reading, Crafting and Cooking can help! Click this link if you would like a copy! The book makes it easy to pinpoint the best books to read. It gives parents arts and crafts activities that are quick and easy. And it provides simple healthful recipes that you can make with your child. Captivate your kid, encourage creative expression and, most of all, have fun together!


Join in the fun with Jake’s Sunday Post.

SUNDAY POST: Captivat(ed) | Lost in Translation

Jakesprinter’s Sunday Post : Captivating | restlessjo

Sunday Post Theme ‘Captivating’ | Campanulla Della Anna

SUNDAY POST : Captivating | rfljenksy – Practicing Simplicity

Captivating | Figments of a DuTchess

Captivating birds for Jake’s theme | Anotherdayinparadise2’s Blog

The Sunday Post: Captivating | Thirdeyemom

Sunday Post: Captivating | بيسان

Sunday Post: Captivating | patriciaddrury

Sunday Post 2013 – Captivating | Thoze Were the Daze

About viviankirkfield

Writer for children - Reader forever Mom of 3, educator, author of FOUR OTTERS TOBOGGAN: AN ANIMAL COUNTING BOOK (Pomegranate Press, 2019), PIPPA'S PASSOVER PLATE (Holiday House, 2019), FROM HERE TO THERE: INVENTIONS THAT CHANGED THE WAY WE MOVE (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2019), SWEET DREAMS, SARAH (Creston Books, 2019), picture book junkie, lover of travel, hiking, fly-fishing, cooking, and playing Monopoly with my 9-year old grandson.

Posted on March 3, 2013, in Reading with Children, Sunday Post and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 20 Comments.

  1. Great post. I guess I wasn’t suprised that the average child’s vocabulary dropped so significantly. In the 50s-60s we had stay-at-home mothers. In the 90s mom’s were working. Wonder how much that influences. Although I read daily to my daughter at bed time and took her to meet authors. But, she was a reluctant reader on her own as she had some learning issues.


    • You are so right, Pat! And I don’t think that computer or video games are going to cause a rise in vocabulary and interpersonal communication for young kids.Each child is unique…and many have reading/learning issues…but parents who read every day (as you did) will definitely make a huge positive impact on their kids!


  2. Thanks for sharing this captivating moments Vivian I love it 🙂


  3. Your pictures make the point about excellent books, but also about the captivating feeling of being hugged by loving arms…and fishing, too!
    Excellent, Vivian, on so many levels.


  4. So true, that reading is important. I know it’s tough for busy parents to find the time, but I must say, reading to my kids was always one of the wonderful, easy, enjoyable things – it was something we all looked forward to, never a chore – and from that standpoint it’s hard to understand why people have such a hard time squeezing it in. But I think one of the other problems is the change in picture books. They are so much shorter, written with so many fewer words. In the effort to condense, I think some of the “pretty” language gets lost sometimes, some of the extra things that might aid vocabulary acquisition and language appreciation. Not always, of course!, but sometimes…


    • I agree, Susanna! I remember, back in the Stone Age when I was in elementary school, we had to memorize poetry…in the 2nd or 3rd grade, in some kind of class performance, I stood up in front of the entire school in the auditorium and recited, ‘Trees’ by Joyce Kilmer. I can’t promise that I understood all the words…but having to do stuff like that helps make the vocabulary become a part of the child’s world.    And the busy-overwhelmed-tired-parent-syndrome is certainly part of the reason why more parents don’t read with their young children…somehow, we need to ignite a renewal in reading to young children…and keep on encouraging parents until it becomes a habit, like brushing your teeth in the morning or saying prayers at night.:)


  5. @Vivian, you have stunning photos 🙂


  6. Yay yay yay! I remember being just in love with my books as a little kid (I even posted something similar to this week’s theme); I was raised on books and raised my own son the same way.

    But I would like to offer a small counterpoint to the idea that stay-at-home mothers were better able to read to their kids. My mom worked during my entire childhood in 60s-70s; I worked during my son’s entire childhood in the 90s; and today my former daughter-in-law and my son work full-time as their child grows up. Yet I, my son, and my granddaugher are avid readers; each of us had/has an excellent childhood vocabulary. This is also true among my cousins and their families, who all have and are working parents.

    On the other hand, two of my nephews are home-schooled, but they are never read to, or encouraged to read, for recreation. They have little or no interest in books, and the older one is not a good reader.

    I’m not sure it’s a matter of stay-at-home vs. working parents (not just mothers), so much as it is the parents’ own lack of interest.


    • Luddy…you make a stellar point! I totally agree…parents who work CAN (and many do) provide those special reading moments…and many parents who are home all day do not understand the importance and value of reading with their kids (and don’t even have books in the house). I just took part in Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move Google+ Hangout…she mentioned that many children spend over SEVEN HOURS in front of a screen…TV, computer, video games, etc. The personal interaction and face-to-face communication that takes place when a parent sits with a child and reads a picture book cannot be replaced by anything else.
      I so appreciate you stopping by and I’m especially grateful for your insightful comment! I hope you will return.:)


  7. That top image of the little boy is beautiful, Vivian.
    Singapore- how exciting!
    Many thanks for the pingback.


    • Hi Jo! Thanks for stopping by and leaving such a lovely comment! The little boy in both photos is my grandson, Jeremy.:) I’m happy to say that he DOES LOVE BOOKS! When I visited last September (he was almost 4), his favorite story of the moment was Dr. Seuss ‘Green Eggs and Ham’ and we read it at least twice a day…in addition to many others.  


    • Oh yes…and Singapore is definitely exciting! I can hardly believe I am really going, Jo.:)   


  8. I so agree that books are where children get most of their new vocabulary. Someone even told me once I definitely had to read to my kids books in French because the French words I use with them are not challenging enough. So the same applies to any book in any language. I hear the types of sentences my kids create and they sound a lot more mature than their age, in a good way. And I get to learn a few new words here and there too!


    • And they can learn so much and so quickly when they are young…we need to be careful not to ‘dumb down’ our expectations of kids…they will always continue to surprise us with what they can learn.:) Thanks, Milka…you always add such wonderful hands-on actual experience comments!!!   


  9. Wow! What a huge gap. Your grandson is so adorable. 🙂
    And congratulations on winning Virginia Wright’s book. I do have your address. 🙂


    • Thanks so much, Tracy! I’m excited about the book.:)   The gap is sad but true…all the more important for us to be putting amazing picture books out there to provide great material for parents and kids to read and talk about together.:)   


  1. Pingback: Sunday Post: Captivating | SC Surf Butler

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