Reading Tips Pre-K-1st Grade
Tips for Parents of Preschoolers
Read early and read often. The early years are critical to developing a lifelong love of reading. It's never too early to begin reading to your child!
Read together every day.
Read to your child every day. Make this a warm and loving time when the two of you can cuddle close.
Give everything a name.
Build your child's vocabulary by talking about interesting words and objects. For example, "Look at that airplane! Those are the wings of the plane. Why do you think they are called wings?"
Say how much you enjoy reading.
Tell your child how much you enjoy reading with him or her. Talk about "story time" as the favorite part of your day.
Read with fun in your voice.
Read to your child with humor and expression. Use different voices. Ham it up!
Discuss what's happening in the book, point out things on the page, and ask questions.
Read it again and again.
Go ahead and read your child's favorite book for the 100th time!
Talk about writing, too.
Mention to your child how we read from left to right and how words are separated by spaces.
Point out print everywhere.
Talk about the written words you see in the world around you. Ask your child to find a new word on each outing.
Tips for Parents of Kindergartners
Play with letters, words, and sounds!
Talk to your child.
Ask your child to talk about his day at school. Encourage him to explain something they did, or a game he played during recess.
Say silly tongue twisters.
Sing songs, read rhyming books, and say silly tongue twisters. These help kids become sensitive to the sounds in words.
Read it and experience it.
Connect what your child reads with what happens in life. If reading a book about animals, relate it to your last trip to the zoo.
Use your child's name.
Point out the link between letters and sounds. Say, "John, the word jump begins with the same sound as your name. John, jump. And they both begin with the same letter, J."
Play with puppets.
Play language games with puppets. Have the puppet say, "My name is Mark. I like words that rhyme with my name. Does park rhyme with Mark? Does ball rhyme with Mark?"
Trace and say letters.
Have your child use a finger to trace a letter while saying the letter's sound. Do this on paper, in sand, or on a plate of sugar.
Write it down.
Have paper and pencils available for your child to use for writing. Working together, write a sentence or two about something special. Encourage her to use the letters and sounds she's learning about in school.
Play sound games.
Practice blending sounds into words. Ask "Can you guess what this word is? m - o - p." Hold each sound longer than normal.
Read it again and again.
Go ahead and read your child's favorite book for the 100th time! As you read, pause and ask your child about what is going on in the book.
Talk about letters and sounds.
Help your child learn the names of the letters and the sounds the letters make. Turn it into a game! "I'm thinking of a letter and it makes the sound mmmmmm."
Tips for Parents of First Graders
Give your child lots of opportunities to read aloud. Inspire your young reader to practice every day!
Don't leave home without it.
Bring along a book or magazine any time your child has to wait, such as at a doctor's office. Always try to fit in reading!
Once is not enough.
Encourage your child to re-read favorite books and poems. Re-reading helps kids read more quickly and accurately.
Dig deeper into the story.
Ask your child questions about the story you've just read. Say something like, "Why do you think Clifford did that?"
Take control of the television.
It's difficult for reading to compete with TV and video games. Encourage reading as a free-time activity.
When your child is trying to sound out an unfamiliar word, give him or her time to do so. Remind to child to look closely at the first letter or letters of the word.
Pick books that are at the right level.
Help your child pick books that are not too difficult. The aim is to give your child lots of successful reading experiences.
Play word games.
Have your child sound out the word as you change it from mat to fat to sat; from sat to sag to sap; and from sap to sip.
I read to you, you read to me.
Take turns reading aloud at bedtime. Kids enjoy this special time with their parents.
Gently correct your young reader.
When your child makes a mistake, gently point out the letters he or she overlooked or read incorrectly. Many beginning readers will guess wildly at a word based on its first letter.
Talk, talk, talk!
Talk with your child every day about school and things going on around the house. Sprinkle some interesting words into the conversation, and build on words you've talked about in the past.
Write, write, write!
Ask your child to help you write out the grocery list, a thank you note to Grandma, or to keep a journal of special things that happen at home. When writing, encourage your child to use the letter and sound patterns he is learning at school.
Reading Tips from Reading Rockets (2006) www.readingrockets.org