Helping your child acquire good reading skills

While reading to me, George stumbled on a word and said it’s meaning immediately. I inquired to know how he was able to say it’s meaning at that point. He replied, “I saw it in a book read yesterday and added it to my new word list”. I was fascinated by this. The word is “entrancing” and George is 8 years.

I started working with George few weeks back at my ReadingClinic and it is interesting to know that he has developed good reading culture, with conscious effort to improve his vocabulary and understand the meaning of each word.

According to Tracy (2008), reading is the only form of entertainment that is also an essential life skill.

With the stay at home directive, as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, parents need to encourage and supervise their children to spend more time reading and reduce screen time drastically. It is important you supervise because some children will pretend to be reading, while their mind is else where.

The increased use of Android phones and laptops by children and teenagers poses more concern. Hence, parents need to ensure their children develop good reading culture.

To help your child acquire good reading skills, you need to start early. Reading is a skill that must be nurtured from a child’s earliest years. Once children know how to read, they still need support to reach their full potential as readers.

Researchers have found that children read better in elementary school when they start off with exposure to a wealth of words from a young age.

Poor reading skill can make a child develop poor attitude towards school and can create self-esteem problem later in life. (Fosudo, 2010).

Children with poor reading skills receive poor grades at school, get easily distracted, have behavioural problems, seem to dislike school, and often fail to develop to their full potential.

Reading for at least 30-40 minutes is a great start to developing good reading culture.

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