Helping your kids with reading

  • The sole responsibility of the teachers is to teach the kids; no doubt. However, for the kids to have a complete and total learning experience, parents too have a key role to play: they must complement the effort of the teachers. The after school hours and holiday times shouldn't be for playing/fun and visitations alone. These times should be judiciously used by parents to engage their kids, check their books, find out where they are lagging behind and put in productive efforts to complement the effort of the teachers.

    According to Andrejs Geske and Antra Ozola (“Factors influencing reading literacy at the primary school”, 2008): “Students reading literacy is substantially influenced by the collaboration of parents and children at the pre-school age…”

    Reading is one of the key components of education. The earlier kids start reading, the better for their educational growth and development. In this piece, let’s take a look at how parents can help make reading an exciting activity for their kids.

    Listen to your kids while they read (aloud)

    Let your kids read while you listen to him or her. Apart from the fact that your presence/listening will make them concentrate, it will also give them a sense of responsibility: like a storyteller telling you a story. While listening, don’t interrupt unnecessarily when they make mistakes, it will make the reading tedious. Rather, note all the mistakes and make corrections him at the end of the reading.

    Let them narrate/summarize the story for you after reading

    After reading the story, tell them to narrate the story to you. This is to test their understanding of the story and also to indirectly build their vocabulary and speech making skills as they subconsciously find the (appropriate) words to use while narrating the story.

    Ask them about the lessons learned from the story

    One of the main functions of literature is didacticism; literature teaches moral lessons. Asking about the lessons will make them recall and understand better the lessons entrenched in the texts. This will ensure that the kids not only build vocabulary with reading; they also build character—talk of killing two birds with a stone.

    Note the difficult words in the story and explain them with relevant examples

    This is also to facilitate the kids’ understanding of the story and build their vocabulary. You can also teach them how to use the dictionary to find the meanings of the highlighted difficult words.

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