Teaching Your Child to
Reading opens up a whole new world to kids. They can
go to strange and exotic places through the pages of a
book. They can learn about history and what others
think the future will hold. And they have incentive
to turn off the TV! Here are five tips for teaching your
child how to read and have fun at the same time:
1. Kids learn about reading with their ears.
Read to a child every day. Use different tones for the
voices of each character. The more exciting the story,
the more interested they will be. My kids loved to hear
me read books that were far above their reading level,
although not their comprehension level. They loved the
way I make the story come to life.
As you read, let your kids look over the pictures and the
words. They may not know what the words are at that
moment but you are setting them up to learn. The more you
read to them, the more words they can recognize by sound.
2. Teach them the alphabet. After all, words are
made up of letters. When they learn the alphabet they
will begin to recognize letters within the words. Use
magnetic letters and the refrigerator as your blackboard.
Show your child each letter and say the name. For
lower-case letters, flash cards that show the upper and
lower-case letters are good for letter recognition.
3. In the early days of school, they used to call the
book for reading with the letters in it a “primer”. The
third way to teach children how to read is through
phonics. Phonics teaches how letters are supposed to
sound. Instead of using flashcards for this, why not get
creative and use items around the house. When studying
the sound for the letter “A”, pull an apple out of the
refrigerator. Finding objects around the house with the
sounds familiarizes your child with the names of everything
4. Now it’s time to learn words. You can watch
shows like “Sesame Street” or “The Electric Company”.
These shows used fun characters to sound out the letters in
words and bring them together as words. Another way is to
involve the entire family. Give each person a few pieces
of poster board. Attach each piece to a different object
around the house.
Since your child is beginning to read, these objects should
be one syllable words like mom, dog, cat, and dad. On the
poster board, write them with dashes between each letter, like
this: d-a-d. Call out each sound with your child
repeating after you. Now, try to get them to put the
sounds together and say the word.
5. Now it’s time to give your child a book. The
last way to teach reading is to let them read it for
themselves. Start with a simple book with one syllable
words. Pictures will help kids with the words if they get
stuck on a sound. The colors in the book should be
vibrant and full of life. If you can find a pop-up book,
that will be even better. After they read, they can pull
the paper lever and see the picture rise to life.
Reading is not the easiest thing in the world to
teach. But when kids are young their minds absorb things
like a sponge. Teaching them at this age is fun and they
retain more information. More help teaching kids