Helping your Child Learn to Read July 06 2008

8 Things a Parent Can Do to Help Their Child Learn to Read

Studies consistently show that the best environment for promoting language development in young children is when parents and teachers share goals, insights, and  information.

Some parents assume that learning to read and write begins in elementary school and is best left until the child reaches the appropriate age. Others, anxious to see that their children succeed, will go overboard to give their children a head start. As a teacher, you can convey to parents your philosophy to literacy development.

You can share with parents the many ways that their children engage in reading and writing every day and how they, as parents, can facilitate this.

Here are just a few:

  1. Provide an environment that values reading and writing. Make books, magazines, and other reading materials an important part of the home. Children can have a special reading spot in the family room, or kitchen and share stories with parents during every day activities. One recommendation is to have a literature display case designed specially for children's books.
  2. Make reading time with the child a daily special occasion. Always make reading a positive experience, no matter how the child behaves through-out the day.
  3. Encourage family members to give books as gifts for birthdays and holidays.
  4. Always have paper, pencils and crayons available. Incorporate writing into pretend play. Alphabet Mini-books, My Very own ABC book, Clip-On Magna doodle,  offer children a wonderful opportunity to pretend while learning reading and writing.
  5. Help children write letters to friends, relatives, or teachers
  6. Write special notes to your children and put them in their lunch box.
  7. Write out grocery lists, recipes, or ‘to do’ tasks with children. Then have the child read as you walk through the task.
  8. Share with parents what your favorite books are. By giving them a list, you are encouraging them to have their children read the books you know children enjoy and will learn the most from.

By including the parent into your early childhood curriculum, you are developing a partnership that will greatly increase the chances that each child will be a successful learner.

Reference: Early Childhood Education, Eva L. Essa