Reading With Your Child
Reading is a great bonding activity between parent and child. During reading time, a parent gets to have one-on-one time with their child and read their child’s favorite stories and books. Aside from being a bonding activity, it also exposes a child to the written text, helping them become familiar with letters, numbers, and words. Reading at home is always thought to be a good supplement to classroom reading sessions.
Forming the Good Habit
To form a good habit, an act has to be done consistently. When it comes to reading, it is best to build this habit while the children are young.
Reading has benefits even before the child learns to talk. Language acquisition happens before reading acquisition. Books help children identify objects, learn words and become familiar with the structure of a story. By the time the child learns the letters, learns how to read and write, they will have the schema for letters, objects, and books.
Maximize the Learning Opportunity
Reading sessions at home can be an extension of the learning process in school. At this age, any sort of activity can be an opportunity to learn, and reading is no different. Below are some tips on how to make bonding time a learning opportunity.
· Read to the child once a day and try to do it at the same time. Keep a schedule so that it can be part of the child’s daily routine.
· Let this reading time be a ritual for both parent and child. If you have other kids, you may read to them as a group, but try your best to have that one-on-one time. For example, you can read to the kids for 30 minutes and devote 30 minutes per child.
· As the child forms the habit of reading, they will develop their preferences. Their natural instinct would be to avoid all other genres that they don’t like. As a parent, try to expose them to different kinds of books (fairytales, detective stories, biographies, etc.). Be patient if you encounter some resistance.
· Touch on some points of discussion during and after reading. Some stories will require further explanation or processing in order to help the child understand what they read. On the flip side, do not feel pressured to discuss everything all the time. There will be stories that require some contemplation.
· For beginner readers: parents may use their fingers to guide them as they read words and sentences. Point at each word, going from left to right. In this way, the child will become familiar with the flow of reading books.
The ultimate goal of reading to children is to teach that to become independent and eager readers. As a parent, you can do a few little things to encourage the formation of a habit of reading. Hopefully, it will instill the belief that reading is a worthwhile activity.