It is hugely important to provide a book rich world for children from a very young age from propping up books alongside changing mats to having a book collection in the bath.
Parents often ask me how best they can help their children’s learning, particularly when reading books and activities start coming home from nursery or school.
Below are some ideas to help you support your little learners when reading with them.
I hope they help – remember to enjoy diving into the wonderful imaginary worlds books provide us with!
Encourage your child to choose books
Ones they would like to have read to them, or would like to read.
Discuss the title, author & illustrator
Very often the title contains tricky words or names from the book. You can introduce these to your child preparation for reading the text.
Give time to look at the pictures
Early readers use lots of picture clues to learn new words. Continue to allow plenty of time for looking at pictures before attempting the words.
It is fun to do a ‘picture’ walk through the book and make some predictions about what may happen!
Run your finger under the words as you read
This helps reinforce the link between the words seen and heard. Encouraging children to follow the words with their fingers helps keep them on track.
Encourage your child to ‘have a go’ at an unknown word by talking about the different ways they may be able to solve it: breaking it down, sounding it out, looking for picture clues, recognising some sounds etc.
Talk about the text after reading
This helps check your child can understand what has happened and what has been read.
In the middle of the story and ask what might happen next.
Ask your child’s opinion of the text
At the end, if he/ she liked it or not – and why?
Ask your child questions about the text
Aids comprehension skills.
Help your child with key words
High frequency words (such as the, so, was, he etc) that appear very regularly in books are tricky and really affect the fluency.
You can assist your child in learning them by heart with the use of flashcards and word games.
Keep it fun!
Demonstrate a positive attitude to reading with your child and tell them you have enjoyed reading with them!