So yesterday you started reading to/with your child. How’s it going? I hope both of you have enjoyed it so far. For today, I want to give you a few tips that will help your reader get better. Some of them might be things you already do but give the other ones a try.
1. Point to the words – If your child isn’t reading yet you should point to the words on the page as you go (if it’s a short book). If they are a new reader then have them point to the words as they read. Pointing to the words does a few things.
For the child that doesn’t read yet it teaches that we read from left to right and how to read a sentence. It also helps your little one start to recognise words as you read. As the child progresses I like to give them one word that shows up a lot in the book like PIG or AND. That helps them begin to recognise words in print and makes them feel super smart because they can READ! (Not really yet, but HEY! they’re happy)
For the new reader, pointing to the words helps them to keep track of were they are as they read. It will also help you to know which words they’re struggling with and if they are actually reading the words or just have the book memorized.
2. Sound Out the WORDS – If your child gets stuck on a word, don’t just offer up the answer. Let him/her work on it for a minute. If they still can’t figure it out help them sound out the letters. If it’s a word they just can’t sound out because phonics rules don’t apply, you are going to have to tell them the word. You want them to practice sounding words out though because that will help them later when they run across a word they don’t know when there isn’t anyone around to give them the answer.
3. Look It Up – If yours is an older child and he/she runs across a word they don’t know then encourage them to look it up in the dictionary. It’s great fun to learn new words together! Looking up words makes sure that you are giving them the correct definition but it also teaches them to look for answers. That’s a great habit to get into. Whenever one of my kids asks me a question I don’t know the answer to I just say, “Well that sounds like a special project! Let’s find out.”
I know that using these tips will help your reader if you are consistent! Remember to let me know in the comments below! Thanks!