Every parent’s secret dream is to have a child who knows how to read before everyone else’s child.
From birth babies and children are gathering skills they will use in reading. Literacy does not start when your child starts school. The best way to instil a love for reading is to simply read to you child. Fostering a love for books begins at home.
Very young children may not understand what you are reading but they will become familiar with how books work. Infants love to imitate adults and turning pages is the first step to teach your child to read. This also enables them to practice their fine motor skills and pincer grasp.
If reading becomes a routine, your children will begin to expect fun and entertaining stories. Read to your child daily especially before bedtime, so they can process what they have learned in their sleep. Positive associations and quality time spent with parents will help children be more interested in “reading” books on their own. If you would like to teach your child to read make it fun!
Phonics must be one of the foundation blocks. Invest in short books with words composed of letters and sounds. Children need to practice phonics and when you want to teach your child reading skills you can make a fun game out of using phonics. Reading requires bringing together knowledge of the sounds and the letters and letter combinations. Silly songs and rhymes can help call their attention to sounds they’ll need to associate with letters in order to read their first word.
Make sure that there are not too many words on a page. Start by having them recognise single words before progressing to phrases and sentences. Images can help a child in the beginning by prompting her to recognise the word she is reading. It helps if words are large enough and printed in bold, easy to read font.
Make sure to pick books that your child will enjoy and even though it might be boring for you, it’s fine to read the same one over and over again! You might not only teach your child to read but can also start to develop critical thinking skills if you pause and ask questions about the book. Ample exposure and lots of repetition is important. You can also teach your child to read by using flash cards.
Every child is different and there isn’t only one way to learn. Learning how to read should be an experience of joy for your child. Many parents are afraid to get involved in their child’s education since they are not teachers.
You are your child’s best teacher, the one that knows him best!
Teepees create safe space reading nooks. Consider using a teepee as one of the tools to teach your child how to read.