Today I’ve another lovely guest post from Colette who blogs over at We’re Going On An Adventure, Colette is a teacher so I actually asked her if she could give me some advice on helping to get Emmy started with her reading. Emmy has a few basic reading books and has the school books she brings home however I am struggling to get her to sit down and try to read and of them.
1. Remember that all reading counts – not just their school books. Recognising letters or words in the environment is a great place to start. Ben used to like to point out letters on road signs or car number plates.
2. Don’t worry too much about books – play games (Orchard Toys – Alphabet Lotto is a fabulous game, have a play with some fridge magnets)
3. Use flash cards – just concentrate on two or three sounds / high frequency words at a time. You can stick them on the fridge and just talk about them occasionally – no pressure to sit down and “read”, just a quick 30 second chat about them as you’re doing something else.
4. Books, magazines, newspapers, recipes . . . it all counts. Find something that interests your little one. They might feel pressured by the idea of “reading a book” but flicking through a magazine may well feel much more appealing.
5. Enjoy sharing books together – read to them, let them discover the joy of story and model a good “story telling voice”
6. Talk. Talk. Talk. Discuss the book, look at the pictures – can you tell the story from the illustrations before you even start to think about the words?
7. Let them see you read. Make sure your children see you reading – reading for a purpose (eg reading a recipe or some instructions) but also reading for pleasure. Set a good example.
Remember that for lots of children reading just “clicks” and they go from decoding every single word to having a good sight vocabulary which means they are able to start reading more fluently – you may well find that when this happens they are much keener to read as they feel they can actually do it. The most important thing is to keep it relaxed and fun. If they feel pressured and are struggling they are more likely to shut down.
Those have been really helpful and I’m going to stop worrying just so much and take it more at her pace, and I LOVE the games tip!