Teaching Your Child to Read
It starts early. You want the very best for your child – the best start, the best support, the best education, and the best experiences. Sometimes it seems like parenting is a quest to figure out what to do and when to do the things that will insure that your child gets the best that you can offer.
Well, here’s the good news. Teaching your child to read is a very simple process. Surprised? Puzzled? Most parents are. Reading seems like such a complex set of skills. How can we be a part of making it happen without expert assistance from educators? Only one activity predicts success in reading: being read to by parents. Research into early literacy and reading has repeatedly found that children who are read to by their parents daily are the best readers during the elementary years.
The reason for this is simple. When you read to your children, you are introducing them to the function of the written word. They are learning that letters have meaning and make words. This lesson is the first lesson in reading and writing. So get out a book and read!
How much time is enough? This question plaques many busy parents who wonder if the time they spend with their child is enough. Start by spending 10 or 15 minutes a day reading and looking at books with your toddler. Then, as he or she grows, add 5 minutes every 6 months until you are reading to your child at least 30 minutes a day. But don’t worry about the time. If you can’t find 30 minutes grab 5 minutes here and 10 minutes there to add up to a half-hour a day.
Don’t forget nursery rhymes and finger plays as reading activities. Use these childhood traditions as springboards to create your own rhyme memories with your child.
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