As I mentioned in my post, Alphabet Books Are Awesome, I find reading to be a very important yet difficult skill to learn and master. It actually involves several areas of the brain to work together. I know it was intimidating for me as a child so I was determined to introduce reading to my children in the least threatening way possible. It goes without saying that reading to your children everyday is important but I also find it is important for them to be actively participating and engaged.
So far my efforts have been effected so I thought I would share some of my ideas and tools.
- Have your child choose the book (or if you are less than jazzed about their taste, how about they choose one and you choose one).
- Pause after the words on each page to comment on the illustration or asked your child a question about the story.
- Read books that rhyme multiple time and let your child complete the rhyme.
- Get magnet letters for you fridge to play with together.
- Have your children watch Super Why, a great show on PBS which teaches some reading basics.
- Get some rebus books for you to read together. In place of some of the words are pictures which you can have your child “read”. I found a great series called All Aboard Reading, Picture Readers.
- Once you are ready to actively start teaching reading, Bob Books are by far the best series to start with that I have seen. We were introduce to these by my children’s preschool. They are 12 page mini books that come in sets of about 12. In Bob Books Set 1: Beginning Readers each book tells an actual story with three letter words starting with only a handful of letters that can all be sounded out. Initially I was skeptical because of the somewhat primitive illustrations but my daughter found them funny and she got so much satisfaction out of successfully reading each book by herself!
- I also write “mystery sentences” on a chalk board easel (that we got at Ikea for 15 dollars!) and help them sound it out. Sometimes I write about what we are having for dessert or about a fun weekend activity coming up.