5 Best Ways to Boost Your Child's Reading Skills.
TIP #1: Read to your child.
Just because it's obvious doesn't mean it's easy!
Sounds simple and obvious. But we know it's not always easy. If you're not a strong reader yourself, or if your life is so busy that by the time bedtime rolls around you're ready to drop from sheer exhaustion, then you may need a little extra encouragement yourself.
The plain and simple fact is that the more you read to your child, the more comfortable they'll be with words and the more they'll want to master reading on their own.
And guess what? It doesn't matter how much or how little you've read to your child in the past. What matters is how much you read ... Starting today!
Reading is important even for the youngest among us.
If your child is very young, look for durable board books: you know, those hard-covered books filled with lots of white space, bright pictures and few words? Read to your child when they're one month old, or even when they're still in the womb. Even if your child doesn't look at or see the book, they'll still love hearing the rhythm of the story and the rise and fall of your voice.
A good habit won't happen naturally.
Face it, we're pretty lazy sometimes and struggle to do all the good things we know we should do. That's why it's important to make reading a regular part of your child's daily schedule
. Cuddle up with a few books right before nap, and again before bedtime. Make reading a family ritual and your child will grow up yearning for another good story.
Hey, keep in mind that you can also read in the car, in the bathtub (there are some great plastic tub-books) or in the kitchen while dinner's cooking.
And pulling out a book is a great way to transition your child from one activity to another. Try saying, "Let's stop playing and read a story before we go to the store."
Point, point, point your way to reading success.
When reading to your child, draw your finger along the words as you go.
This familiarizes your child with the foundations of reading: that words have meaning; that words on a page are read from left to right; and that one page of information carries on to the next.
Let your child's interests be your guide.
Gather a collection of books sure to capture your child's attention. Babies love to learn about animals, colors and shapes
, as well as letters and numbers. If your child shows a keen interest in fire trucks, well, then, by all means give them fire truck books.
Outgrowing the lap doesn't mean they've outgrown the need to read.
Your young child will love snuggling on your lap with a good story. But even if your child has outgrown your lap doesn't mean they've outgrown the need for you to read. Continue the reading tradition long after they can read for themselves.
Read more challenging, longer chapter books that are beyond your child's reading level. Whatever else you do, always keep in mind that you're planting a "reading seed" with every single book you read.
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