Sunday, June 13, 2010

Great Article about Reading with Your Children!

Reading at home: What are the benefits and how to go about doing it?

Reading to your child from infancy throughout the school years has been shown to increase literacy skills and school reading success. Reading at home provides a foundation for home literacy where children are taking meaning from books and their own lives and transferring that information to other books. Thereby, building a storehouse of knowledge that they can draw from. It also promotes interest in books and a motivation to read as they grow older. This is very important because as children progress through school, reading at home tends to fall by the wayside. Other things such as extracurricular sports, music, and even television viewing become preferable to opening a book at home. Avid readers are grown by the influence of their families.

Is it enough just to read to your child though? The research says “no”. It isn’t just the mere act of reading that promotes stronger vocabulary and comprehension skills. Instead it is the way that you read to your child and how you discuss books. Look at the pictures and ask questions about what is happening in the book. Point out new vocabulary and ask what they mean. Discuss the elements of the story: who are the characters, what is the setting, what happened at the beginning, middle, and end, what did they learn from the story? These are just a few things that you can do as you read.

What else can you do to promote literacy in the home? Be a model for your child and pick up a book and read for your own enjoyment. Make grocery lists together, write notes, discuss what they are reading at school, etc. All of these things will build stronger and better readers.

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