Very often your child is required to read and log as part of nightly homework. Most of the time, as the parent, you just say to your child to read for the allotted amount of time and you will sign it when he or she is finished. When your child hates to read, you probably find yourself reminding your child to do this homework several times and to just get it over with. Did you ever think twice as to whether your child is enjoying the reading experience, as well as developing enhanced skills?
You as the parent have the power to create an enriching reading experience for your child at home by incorporating some very simple strategies and routines, thus making reading at home fun!
First of all, don’t fret when your child asks you to read the same book night after night. Repeated readings actually improve fluency. Even if you realize that your child is relying on memory to read the same book over and over, he or she is actually practicing his or her reading voice. If you have an extra five minutes, it is also helpful to model your reading voice, so that your child can learn to read with expression and practice fluency at the very same time.
Another strategy for making reading at home fun and exciting at home is to use audio books, especially when you do not have the time to sit and read with your child. You can easily purchase audio books on an online bookstore, such as Amazon, and download them directly to your computer, or find them in the children’s section at your local library. While your child is listening to the story, he or she should follow along in the printed book. The audio book strategy helps your child to learn new words and hear fluent reading.
Quite often your child finds reading frustrating because he or she has difficulty reading many words on the page. Page previews help your child by browsing through the pictures in the book to identify unfamiliar words.
Making a private and comfortable space for your child to read, such as a reader’s den, will encourage your child to enjoy reading. A good idea is to put a nice and comfy beanbag chair, small lamp, and bookshelf in this den so that reading is considered a satisfying and relaxing experience. Perhaps, you can also paint or purchase a sticker decal that labels the area, such as “Sarah’s or Joe’s Reading Den.”
These simple and stress-free strategies should definitely help with making reading at home fun and successful. Try these now and you’ll never know from those late night reading struggles!
Source: Reading Connection Beginning Edition at the Ramaz Lower School
By Brittany Cogan, Learning Specialist