“Teaching a child to read” is a slightly misleading statement, implying you can simply instruct someone and they will be able to read. Reading is actually more of a process, something that has to be learned over time, and follows a certain order of development. Memorization is not technically learning; if you want your child to be truly “literate”, read on for some tips on the learning process.
Read to your child. Many studies have been done that show that children who are read to starting from a young age do much better in reading than those who were not read to at home.
Talk about the pictures. As soon as your child is able to, discuss the pictures in the book. The realization that words and pictures are connected is a big one in the learning-to-read process.
Provide a “book-rich” environment. Repeated exposure often leads to learning. Simply having plenty of books to explore, play with, and yes, even tear up, increases literacy skills.
Introduce letters early. No one likes to admit their children watch a lot of T.V., but we all know they do. However, if used wisely, T.V. can be a learning tool; many children’s shows introduce letters to children as young as two. In order for this to be effective, though, you need to watch along with your child and talk about what is being shown.
Don’t neglect phonics. In order to be able to read, children need to know that letters make sounds and that you put those sounds together in order to read. When working with your child, don’t forget to work on letter sounds.
Rhyme with your child. Not only is rhyming fun, but knowing how to rhyme is a large indicator of literacy understanding in a child.
by David McLeod
Owner School-Supply-List.com and Elementary School Teacher
David has been teaching elementary school in Central Texas for over 7 years and has over 15 years of experience in online education related websites and blogs.