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How to teach your child to read?

So, do you remember how you started reading? Probably not. Me neither!

When we read, it naturally comes to us. But when you think about it, kids need to begin from the start. So, how we do teach them?

Tutors4Berkshire suggests ways to help you through the process of teaching your kids to read.

Exposure. Children need to start having exposure as young as possible. This includes understanding the world, playing with playdough (making letters and numbers), playing with toys and interacting with friends.

During lockdown, children were isolated and had very limited contact with other children. It was difficult giving maximum exposure to children during this time period. However, many schools and tutors did a great job through zoom and online lessons.

Library. Library is your new best friend. It is full of colourful, picture and graphic books, available for all ages and levels. Parents are strongly encouraged to take their kids to libraries and pick out different types of books. There is no need to push them to read all of the books fully, but pick out what they find most interesting and focus on that.

Phonics. Phonics is associating objects with a letter for example A for Apple. The idea is the children will remember the sound of letter and the sound of apple. We recommend working through flashcards to learn the letters.

Diagraphs. 2 letter like for example ph, sh and ch. The children would learn diagraphs with the pictures. This can be learned in a similar way to Phonics.

High Frequency Words. These occur very often in reading and writing (The, am, had). It is important children learn to identify and read these words. This can be achieved through games and flashcards.

Songs and nursey rhymes. These help to build phonemic awareness. The children hear the sounds and syllables in words, which helps them to understand the words more. Why don't you play these next time you are in the car with them?

Read everyday, write everyday, ask questions.

It is important you ask your children about the books. For example, encourage them to engage with the pictures ("Do you see the tree?" or "Where is the Sun?")

Children are encouraged to:

  • Write stories they enjoy

  • Watch the news- Newsround and Blue Peter

  • Avoid programmes with bad vocab like with slang terms. (Eg. Eastenders)

  • Once confident, try reading harder books. Some of my favourite are Narnia and Harry Potter !

Always remember every child learns at their own pace and it is not a competition.
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