How to teach your child to read Part 1

One of the most essential things a child will do in his or her life is to learn to read. This is because we live in a world where reading is essential for success. Some parents and educators worry that they’re on the wrong track with reading instruction if their children’s reading ability doesn’t improve overnight.

We live in a world where reading is essential for success, this fact makes reading one of the important things a child should do. As parents, we often worry and think we’re in the wrong when our children’s reading ability does not happen quickly as we expect or at an age we expect.

Children learn to read at different times and/or rates, so patience is a key ingredient along with choosing a method that is best suitable to your child.

Teaching a child to read

When do kids learn to read?

From my research, there is no right age for kids to learn how to read. Kids are different and they learn and progress differently just like in other skills.  With that being said, Schools, the DOE (Department of Education) have timelines for when kids should be able to read.

One of the key ingredients that one must have and develop is PATIENCE

Here are ways I have been teaching my child to read.

1 Create a love for reading

Start reading for your child at infancy, this helps to instill the love of books and reading from a young age. Reading to your child on a daily basis will help them develop their comprehension skills, grow vocabulary and they can learn how to sound out words. Studies show that children who enjoy reading and love books have more easily attainable, reading success, once they’re of school-age. You can read this post for ways you can make reading fashionable for your child.

Engage your child as you read books, ask questions about the book, and encourage them to engage with the pictures.

2 Teach your child how to recognize uppercase and lowercase letters of the alphabet and determine alphabetical order.

In the beginning stages, the focus for us was not on the letter names the alphabet stands for, like “a” stands for an “apple”, but rather on helping my child identify and know the letter.

We first started learning uppercase letters because they are easier to distinguish from one another which helps children to grasp letter recognition quicker and then, learn to read. Some lowercase letters look alike, which may be confusing for beginners, like “p” and “q”, “b” and “d”, “h” and “n”. My child was first confused by these three letters but because she had grasped the basics of letter identification, she was able to spot the difference much quicker.

3 Teach letter sounds

Teaching a child the sounds associated with each letter of the alphabet instead of the letter names, this method will help them begin to sound out short words once they learn the link between letters and their sounds. For example, when a child knows the sounds for C, A, and T, then they can sound the word CAT.

For this method, I like to make crafts with the letters and sound the letters of the Alphabet. Flashcards work great.

4 Make it fun

Children are different and they learn at their own pace, so as you teach your child to read, be patient and make it fun.

Here are some ways I use to make teaching my children fun:

  • I read books for each letter
  • Play word games
  • Do fine motor and sensory activities
  • Create fun alphabet crafts and art projects
  • Learn simple rhymes and songs

Here’s an example of an alphabet craft the kids and I created.

Learning to read is a different journey for every child, this methods work well for my child another may work well for your child. Be patient and keep on making time to help your child learn to read. This is part 1, In my next post, I will share more about blending vowels & consonants.

Thank you for reading up until this part, do share in the comments how you’re teaching your child to read.

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