When a young student starts to read, it’s a very exciting time for parents! But progressing from a beginning reader to a good reader takes time, practice, and knowing and using certain strategies.
Here is a list of three simple strategies to practice with your child that will promote good reading.
1. Have her use the pictures in a story multiple ways:
- To predict what might happen before reading
- To figure out an unknown word or sentence
- To see what makes sense in the story
2. Have him use what he knows about the sound/letter connection:
- Look for beginning, middle, and ending sounds to figure out new words
- Look for word “chunks” or word “families” to decode unfamiliar words
- Blend letter sounds to figure out a tricky word (for example, the “br” in bring)
3. Look for meaning in the story and check for comprehension:
- When reading, have him skip an unknown word, read to the end of the sentence, then think about what word would make sense
- Periodically, have him stop and make mental “pictures” of what he’s reading
- After reading, have him sequence and summarize events from the story; this can be done by telling, writing, and/or drawing
These strategies help beginning readers systematically build on their prior knowledge to become good readers!