Please welcome Alvina Lopez who brings us a great list to share with parents. I plan to use this post for Literacy Month by adding a link in an email to parents. It is our hope you find this useful! ~EMP
Most parents, starting from when their children are very young, become anxious about their kid’s education. Are they going to the right school? Should they be learning their multiplication tables? If they learn an instrument early in life, will this improve their grades? Theories abound about what you should teach your child and when, but in my personal experience, the key to academic success in almost any subject starts with reading. From teaching, we know also know that the students of ours who absorb the information we present to them most easily are usually adept readers.
While teachers may be able to teach their pupils to read, there’s not enough time nor is there enough personal influence that teachers can teach children to love to read. As such, it’s absolutely essential that teachers constantly emphasize to parents the importance of enjoyable leisure reading. If parents need help trying to get their children to read at home, suggest the following tips:
1. Start reading often yourself.
You’ve certainly heard the saying “monkey see, monkey do,” and it holds especially true for parents and their children. Kids like to copy their parents, especially when they are young. If your child sees you reading constantly, she will likely pick up the habit in turn. Don’t just wish for your kid to start reading. Embrace the practice yourself and you’ll see how easily your kid follows suit.
2. Encourage reading in whatever form or genre.
Depending on your reading tastes, you may have a preconceived idea of what constitutes good reading. Still, kids have their own tastes, and, especially in the beginning, you should encourage whatever reading they enjoy, even if its cartoon books or cheesy young adult novels. They won’t necessarily be interested in Literature with a capital L at first. Once they learn to love to read, you can challenge them with weightier books later.
In order to infect your child with the love of reading, you must ritualize the entire process, up until the first part of actually acquiring books. Take your child to a bookstore or library once every one or two weeks during which time you browse books together. Young children love having experiences, and if you can set up buying or borrowing books as an exciting adventure, then your kids will find reading that much more exciting.
4. Spend time reading together.
Reading aloud not only encourages kids to become excited about reading, but it also helps further develop their oral skills. Take turns reading a page out loud as theatrically as possible. For kids who find reading particularly boring, this practice can help bring the story and characters alive.
If parents aren’t yet convinced about the importance of teaching their children to love reading, then point them to this 2010 study, which found that kids given free books of their choice over the summer scored substantially higher on tests during the school year than kids who were not given free books.
Alvina Lopez is a freelance writer and blog junkie, who blogs about accredited online colleges. She welcomes your comments at her email Id: alvina.lopez @gmail.com.
Celebrate Music and Literacy by taking advantage of Elizabeth’s book Inspired by Listening, a teacher resource book that focuses on how to use listening experiences in your classroom to inspire all kinds of writing (including sentence and paragraph writing, poetry and narratives), reading strategies (including visualization and main idea) and even grammar practice; all while listening to music that you love. The book is on sale this month only (March) at 20% off!