Tips for Parents
The most important thing that we can do to help our children become successful readers is to model good reading habits for them. Children are constantly observing the adults in their environment and copying the behaviors they see. Seeing adults take pleasure in reading a book, magazine, or newspaper will make children want to read themselves. One of the most precious gifts that you can give your child is the bonding time you spend with them as you engage in an exciting book. Through reading, we can enrich our minds as well as relax and let the book take us on a whole new adventure. Our goal as parents and teachers is to help instill a lifelong love of reading in our children. Listed below are some ideas to help promote reading in your home:
Read with your child for at least twenty minutes a day.
Choose books on topics that interest your child.
Create a special place in your home for your child to read and write.
Encourage your child to keep a personal journal. These journals provide wonderful opportunities to write about a reaction they may have had to the story.
Give gifts of reading materials, this can include books, comics and magazine subscriptions.
Take writing materials and books with you wherever you go.
Praise your child for their reading efforts.
The goal of reading is to make meaning of texts, therefore certain steps should be followed through to check your child's comprehension of the reading material. You may want to use these prompts to help assess your child's understanding of the written material.
Before reading a story
Predict what they think the story will be about.
You may want to activate prior knowledge or brainstorm any ideas or experiences that they might have had that are connected to this topic.
Generate some questions that they might want answered in this selection.
Confirm their predictions.
Predict what they think might happen next.
Ask them what happened so far.
Relate new information in the selection to their prior knowledge.
Respond to generated questions.
Retell the story in their own words.
Who were the main characters in the story?
Can you tell me about the characters in the story?
What was the story about?
Where did the story take place?
What was the story problem?
What happened first, next, then, finally (ending)?
How was the problem in the story solved?
What did the author mean when he used the words .?
Did anything like this ever happen to you?
What did you learn form reading the story?
Did you enjoy the book?
What was your favorite part of the story?
Would you recommend this book to a friend or family member? Why?
Would you like to read more books on this topic, or by this author?
What new words did you learn in reading this book?
The following strategies you may find very helpful when working with your child at home.
When your child gets stuck on a particular word, encourage them to ask the following questions:
What makes sense?
Are there word parts I know?
I think the word is _________. Is there a picture to confirm this?
I'll read the sentence again. Does that make sense?
The following are some varied ways your child can be involved with a book each night.
You can read a story aloud to your child.
Your child can read aloud to you, another family member or a friend.
You and your child can take turns reading a book aloud.
Your child can choose a book and read it silently.