Looking for ways to get your child excited about reading? Try these handy tips!
- Read to your child every night for at least 10-15 minutes…more is better.
- Ask your child to tell you who the main characters are, where the story is taking place (i.e. on a farm, in outer space, in a house, outdoors, etc.), and when the story takes place (i.e. in the future, in the morning, in the daytime or nighttime, etc.). Also ask them what the story is about. Characters, Setting & Plot are very important to help children gain a better understanding of what they’re reading. Most children’s stories have some type of problem for the main character. The main character has to find a solution to the problem usually with the help of other characters.
- If your child is reading chapter books, you read one chapter to them, then have them read one to you. Talk about what might happen next in the story (make a prediction), then continue reading to see if your prediction was right. Discuss what’s happening in the story and try to relate it to another book, to your child’s life, to a family event, an event in school, or relate it to a movie or T.V. show.
- If your child comes across unfamiliar words, try to help them sound them out by breaking the word into parts, using the context surrounding the word, deciding whether the word has a long or short vowel sound, or look it up in the dictionary to help with pronunciation and meaning. Make a list of unfamiliar words and make sure your child knows the meaning. This will help with comprehension of the story.
- Ask a lot of questionsand encourage your child to ask questions while reading.
- Whenever possible, take your child on a “field trip” to a museum, attend a play, go on a hike in the woods and identify trees, plants, flowers, etc. And, of course, make frequent trips to the library to pick up some good books!