Join us to celebrate the wonderful things caregivers and parents already do for children to help them get ready to read. Here you will discover ideas that you can use to help get your children ready for school, specifically getting ready to read.
Preparing a child to read does not mean that you have to be a classroom teacher. You can learn how to take advantage of opportunities that arise in daily life to help your child get ready to read. Often, these are unplanned, casual acts like commenting about words on an article of clothing or encouraging children to talk more when you are having a conversation. It can also be making an effort to read good books with children, telling them what new words mean, and helping them to use these new words. Getting your child ready to read also means singing songs, playing games and playing with your child.
You are Your Child’s First Teacher
Why do parents and caregivers need to take advantage of opportunities and moments for purposeful activities to get a child ready to read? The things a child learns as a toddler and preschooler can have an impact on his later success in school.
Children who have many literacy experiences as toddlers and preschoolers come to school ready to learn. (Allington & Walmsley, 1995).What this means is that children who come to kindergarten without these experiences may be significantly behind other children in their oral language development such as speaking and literacy knowledge. Thus they may find school more difficult.
The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC 1998) states that “failing to give children literacy experiences until they are school age can severely limit reading and writing levels they ultimately attain” (p.6).
During the first months and years of life, children’s experiences with language and literacy can begin to form a basis for their later reading success. (Burns, 1999)Research repeatedly documents that the more children know about language and literacy before they start school, the better equipped they are to succeed. Areas of importance are oral language development (speaking), phonological awareness (sounds of the language), appreciation and motivation for books and writing along with print awareness and letter knowledge.
Values, attitudes, and expectations held by parents and others with respect to literacy are likely to have a lasting effect on a child’s attitude about learning to read. (Snow et al., 1998, p.138)In fact, research shows that one of the best indicators of children’s school success is not likely the family income or level of education but the extent to which the parents are concerned with their child’s education and involvement with the school.