Guest Blogger: Kathleen Thomas

Monday, September 26, 2011

Start the Reading Process Early
Article provided by Kathleen Thomas on behalf of Primrose Schools

Reading is an essential skill that all children must learn, but for most parents it is not just about the process of learning because they want to instill a love for reading in their children. Instead of waiting for an educational institution such as a preschool or day care to educate their children, it is best for parents to work with their children from the very beginning. Studies have shown that early reading is a precursor to academic achievement in school and it does create beneficial changes in the brain as well.

Although many parents often question what is the appropriate age to start reading with their children, there is really not an appropriate age because it is all about reading with them as soon as possible on a daily basis. It is essential to make reading fun and interesting children, so be sure to carefully select books and stories appropriate for their age group. For young children, focus on books with lots of pictures, rhythmic words, and interesting stories. Make every effort to read with your children on a consistent basis each and every day because you want to instill it within them so it will be a lifelong habit.

The type of material you read is not that important as long as your children enjoy it, but the key is consistency. Avoid books that may be too advanced for them or if your children do not find the book interesting then find another book that they like. The best thing to do is find a few books that your children will love and get them to read the books repeatedly. Once your child has a few favorite books they will be enticed to read and even recite them more often and then they will be more interested in exploring new titles. Here are some more tips that you can use to foster a love of reading and books.

- Saturate the home with books

The home should have an abundance of books and they should see the adults and their siblings reading on a daily basis as well. Be sure to add a small bookshelf in your child's room so they will have easy access to books.

- Read each and every day

Again, reading consistently is the key to making your child a lifelong reader. Take time read at least 20-30 minutes before bed or whenever it is convenient and read along with them or allow them to read independently when they are older.

- Encourage reading during the downtime

Leave books in the car or anywhere else they spend time to encourage even more reading.

- Obtain a reading list from school

When your child attends school, request a supplementary reading list from their teacher so they will have some books to read that are relevant to their course of study. This is known to not only improve their reading skills because it also helps them improve their grades and stay ahead of the class.

- Encourage recitation

Encourage your children to read and recite their favorite stories and passages because it improves their comprehension skills.

Reading is a journey that you should take with your children very early in their lives so they will continue to do it for themselves in the future. Surround your child with books and schedule a daily reading time to develop their skills and ease them into reading. There is never right or wrong to time to read with your child, so the best advice is to start today.

Kathleen is a Communications Coordinator for the Atlanta day care facility, a member of the AdvancED® accredited family of Primrose Schools (located in 16 states throughout the U.S.) and part of the network of day care preschools delivering progressive, early childhood, Balanced Learning® curriculum.

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