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How to Teach a Child to Read in 5 Simple Steps

Teaching your child to read begins at birth when you introduce them to pre-literacy skills. However, they officially learn to read when they are between 5 and 7 years old.

Young mom reading book to her infant baby
Young mom reading book to her infant baby

Literacy is a critical component for any adult; therefore, the most outstanding achievement for your child to accomplish is learning “how to read” and then learning to understand “what they have read.”  Reading is a complex cognitive process that requires the intervention of a parent or a teacher to be effective.  However, most parents are worried that they do not have what it takes to teach their children to read. The best way to teach your kids to read is by making it a fun process.

Below are five simple steps to teach your child to read in a fun way.

ONE: Read Aloud for your Child!

One of the ways you can teach your child to read is by reading aloud for them.  The process of teaching them to read begins at infancy when you start reading for your newborn after welcoming them home. Besides instilling a special bond between you and your baby, reading aloud develops their love for books.  Children introduced early on to reading are more likely to succeed when they finally go to school.  On the other hand, children who don’t enjoy reading at an early age are more likely to struggle with reading later.

TWO: Build Phonemic Awareness Through Songs and Rhymes.

Children’s songs and rhymes create a good platform for reading. They give children the opportunity to learn new sounds and syllables that help them read. In addition, you can teach your child phonemic awareness through clapping rhythmically and reciting songs in unison.  These activities are fantastic ways for children to develop the literacy skills necessary for reading success.

THREE: Be a Reading Role Model

Your behavior highly determines your child’s dedication and love for reading.  If they don’t see you reading at home, they will not develop a fascination for reading.  As such, make a conscious effort to be a constant reader and let your child see you reading every day.  Let your child know that reading is essential to children and adults and applicable in real-life.

Smiling adult woman reading magazine in chair , we start read as kid
Grab a book every time you get a chance… Even if it means doing it for your child!

FOUR: Read together with your child Daily and Ask Questions.

Children pick up so many skills just by reading with them. You can, for instance, read for children and ask them to read using the same pace and tone. Reading with your child helps them with reading fluency and improves their comprehension skills. They also enhance their vocabulary as they also develop fluency in reading. Significantly, creating a reading culture with your child grows their love for reading and makes them successful in reading and other subjects. Asking relevant questions when reading improves your child’s reading comprehension.

FIVE:  Be Patient and Make it Fun!

Every child learns at their own pace; as such, you should be extremely patient with them and make it as enjoyable as possible! Besides reading regularly, include fun reading activities, such as acting some of the characters in the book. You can also improve your child’s ability and love for reading by allowing them to pick their books. Another way to make your child’s reading fun is integrating technology, such as watching a movie about a book you had read earlier.

What’s more?

Learning to read requires various skills. Some of the skills that your child needs to learn reading include the following:

Phonemic awareness: The ability to hear and manipulate varying sounds in words.

Vocabulary:  Your child must understand the meaning of words,   their context, and their definitions for compelling reading.

Fluency:  Fluency is reading aloud with constant speed, accuracy, and improved understanding.

Reading Comprehension: This is the ability to understand the meaning of words in information boos and storybooks.

Phonics: This is the ability to recognize the relationship between letters and sounds.

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