If you are a parent, you know the immense benefits of reading with your child. Here are a few tips and tricks to infuse FUN into reading to keep your child interested and engaged. The best part is that while you're at it, you'll also help to boost your child's speech, vocabulary, and comprehension while learning, connecting, and bonding with your child. I bet you'll even have fun too -- Talk about a lot of wins!
Here are my Top 5 Reading Tips:
1. Repeat Back to Me.
Ask your child to repeat new words. Regardless of age, this tip can increase your child’s vocabulary, confidence, and enunciation. From easy words to difficult ones, this is a trick that can be a huge confidence boost for your child, plus it can get them to practice and work to improve on their speech.
> “Can you say truck?”
> “Can you say hippopotamus?”
> “Can you say flibbertigibbet?”
Be sure any feedback you give is constructive and encouraging so they will have a positive experience and want to continue.
2. Fill in the Blank.
When reading books with rhyming verse, or books with repetition, leave out some of the rhyme words or common phrases to get your child to fill in the blank. This keeps your child engaged, paying attention, and (trust me) your child will surprise you with how quickly they catch on. It won't be long until they are busy telling you other words that rhyme too!
3. Word Meaning.
When you come across new words, ask your child if they know what that word means. You’d be surprised how often there are words that kids will say that they do not know the correct context of. And you'll probably also be just as surprised with the words that your child does know! If your child does know the meaning of the word, ask him/her to tell you about it. Remind your child that if there are ever any words that they don’t know the meaning of, to simply ask – because that is how we learn!
4. Exercising Choice.
When reading books with illustrations, it can be fun to ask your child which option he/she would choose or which is his/her favourite and why. “Which one would you choose?” Whether it is options, pictures, inventions, creations, animals, etc., it can be fun for kids to exercise their choice!
> “Ooh, that’s a fun choice – why did you pick that one?” You can take it a step further by asking the reasons for their choice. A simple answer of “because I like it” is totally fine. However, this process will encourage independent thought and you can also participate to show your choice and reasons for your choice which will teach your child about difference of opinion.
5. Learning Takeaways.
Reviewing any pages that have great learning messages is a great way to reflect and connect your child with the learning points of the story.
> For young toddlers, asking posing questions where they can answer Yes/No, and expand on their answers if they are able is a great way to develop their comprehension and independent thinking.
> For older kids aged 3-8, you can pose questions that will elicit a reflective response, such as: “What do you think the main character learned in this story?” Or “Can you tell me 2 things you learned from this."
There you have it! Give these Top 5 Reading Tips a try and let us know how they work for you! If you have any other tips that you use and have found fun and successful, let us know in the comments below.
About the Author:
Kristin Pierce loves chai lattes, inspirational quotes, hunting down incredible kids books, and writing in rhyme. She is a Children's Book Author, Self-Awareness Educator, and Momma of two who is on a mission to spread empowering and inspiring messages about following your passion, thinking outside-the-box, and believing in your big dreams. She is the author of Your Inner Compass That Could and, coming soon, Mayva O'Meere, Creationeer.
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