Learning & Reading For Children

Learning & reading children often are creative & enjoy their fantasy world. Methods for parents to use to encourage children infant to high school age to read.

Every parent knows the importance of reading for their child. The issue is not in wanting your child to read, it is in getting your child to read. Children do things that they enjoy doing. The trick lies in teaching your child to enjoy reading.

Learning to read involves learning the concepts of letters and words. Letters put together form words, words put together tell stories. By reading to your child, you teach that child that written words tell stories and that stories can transport you to wonderful places and events. Knowing your child and his or her interests will help guide your choices when it comes to books. Choose subject matter that is of interest to your child, and your chances of encouraging your child to read will increase.

Reading needs to be directed to your child's level of development. Choose age appropriate books and subject matter for your child. Just as in television viewing and internet access, it is necessary for you as a parent, to be aware of what your child is reading and to insure that their reading choices will not be detrimental to their development.

Infancy

· Choose brightly colored books that will grab your infant's attention. Words are not necessary at this age. By describing the pictures to your infant, you are providing the basis for learning that the pictures can tell a story or provide a description.

· Choose board books or comparable books that allow your infant to have tactile contact with the story.

· Let your infant look through their picture books on their own. Encourage it!

· Try to establish a set reading time every day. At bedtime or naptime, reading can help relax the child and give both of you something to look forward to each day.

Toddler

· Select books that have a rhyming cadence or fairy tales that are familiar to your child. Familiarity with a story encourages your child to return to a book and will help hold their interest.

· Repetition will help your child memorize passages or entire books. Memorization can help lead to word recognition and is an important part of the learning to read process.

· At this stage, your child may be learning to spell their name and recognize the letters in their name. Encourage this letter recognition by asking your child to point out different letters that they recognize when reading.

Pre-School and Kindergarten

· Encourage letter recognition and memorization of the alphabet. Have your child point out those letters that they recognize. Start working in word recognition, words such as mom, dad, no, yes, are words that the child can easily identify.

· Allow your child to begin selecting their own books to read. This will help you follow your child's interests and can guide future book choices for you.



· Take your child to the library. Most libraries will allow your child to get their own library card as soon as they can write their first and last names. What an incentive for your child to learn some very important letters in the alphabet, their own library card!

· Visit your local book store with your child. Most book stores have separate children's sections that are designed with the intention of getting your child's attention. What an important way to introduce your child to the opportunities to read, all those books set up with the sole intention of being read. It can get your child asking for books!

Primary Grades

· Teachers will now be working with your child attempting to teach him or her to become a better reader. Book logs will come home designed to track your child's reading. It is important to have a set time for reading at home each afternoon or evening. The television and video games need to be turned off, and your child needs to be focused on reading.

· Reading aloud to your child is still important. You can introduce chapter books and read one or two chapters from the book together each evening. Your child will remember this together time long after they have started reading on their own. By investing your time with your child at this stage, you emphasize the importance you place on reading.

· Include books in your gift-giving strategy for your child. Choose books that you know will interest your child. Start your child on series books such as The Hardy Boys, Nancy Drew, The Magic Tree House, Nate the Great, The Babysitters Club, Sweet Valley High, etc. Series books can create a separate world for your child that they cannot wait to get back into each day.

Secondary Grades

· By this age, you have helped to create an active interest in reading for your child. For some children, the challenge will not be in keeping your child interested in reading, but in getting them to read the material they need to for school. Teach your child to explore alternative methods for finding reading material. Introduce them to the card file at the library where they can research by subject. Show them how to channel the internet's resources for their research material. Having to find the information through a search can often be more rewarding for your child than having to look through a book they have been handed.

· Keep track of your child's reading progress. Conversations with your child's teacher can help you gauge your child's reading level and ensure that your child is on track with their reading. It is critical that your child has the proper reading foundation now so that they do not have educational difficulties later. If your child is struggling with their reading, there are many programs set up in most schools in the United States, to help get your child back on track. Your child's teacher or school administrator should be aware of these programs and can direct you to the appropriate resource.

Junior and Senior High School

· These are the years where keeping track of your child's reading material becomes difficult. Discuss your child's reading choices with them. As your child approaches adulthood, they may begin to identify with characters from books that they have read. Getting your child to open up to you on what they think they have in common with a character in a book, can really help you as a parent gain insight as to what your child thinks and where they are in their life.

· Recommend books to your child that you really enjoyed and feel would be appropriate for your child to read. After your child has read the book, discuss it with him or her. See where their viewpoint differs from yours.

· Continue to give books as gifts, and encourage your child to give books as gifts too.

It is possible to pass your love of reading on to your child. It is also possible to create a love for reading in your child when reading is not one of your passions. Reading opens a whole world up for you child. Teach them that books are the keys to learning about life, and that books are our friends.

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