Teaching Reading And Writing To Children

Strategies and suggestions parents can incorporation when teaching reading and writing to their children.

No one can stress enough the importance of exposing children to reading and to books. In some cases it is unfortunate that we live in a "techno" world, a world in which even very young children know how to work the VCR, play video games and manipulate a mouse.

Now, these are not necessarily bad things. Each one has it's positive points however, I think all parents would agree that they would rather see their children open up a book or ask to be read to over seeing them turn on the television set. The first and foremost step to creating a young reader is to ensure that children have access to all kinds of reading material. Books, magazines, newspapers, anything that exposes them to the written word, to the concept of story telling and to using their own imagination.

Everyone has heard at one time or another about the benefits of exploring their local libraries. This is an ideal place to begin. Contact your library to find out if they have children's story times or special hours devoted to children. If not, create your own story time with your child. Setting aside only fifteen minutes a day to read together can leave a lasting impression on your child.

Teach your children by example. Let your kids see you read. Read anything and everything you can with them - billbaords, street signs, license plates - the list goes on and on. Don't keep books out of reach of young hands. A book perched high up on a bookshelf may look nice and compliment your decor but it does do the kids any good.

Keep books in plain view. Try placing them around your house in places where they might show up unexpectedly. I've found the best place to put books is right on top of the television set, directly over the on/off button. Little hands reaching to turn on the TV might just stop before the power is turned on if they notice that something is different. You may just be pleasantly surprised to see those hands change direction and reach for a book instead.

Let your children immerse themselves, both psychologically and physically. Let them spread the books across the floor. The more the merrier! Get down on the floor with them, turn pages, point at pictures, tell stories, laugh and read! Try to offer books as an alternative to television watching. You may be surprised by how receptive your children may be to the idea of reading. Incorporate writing into your story times. Let your children write books of their own. Depending on their ages have your children write a book for you to read. Or, if they happen to be too young have them dictate or act out a story and put their story into words for them. Help you children express themselves by putting their thoughts and feelings down on paper. Allow them to illustrate their book. The more personal you can make it the better. Make a title page with their name in big, bold print for them to see and admire as their own creation. Praise them, read it to them, have them read it to you. Purchase a composition book just for their stories. You could very well be creating something that they'll have forever, something they will enjoy for many, many years - even looking back on it as they get older and they will appreciate the time you gave to them.

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