When Reading…
  • Find books at the right level for your child. You want them to know most of the words with two or three new words, but not too many or they will become frustrated and not want to read.
  • Find out what your child is doing in school. Encourage the same things that the teachers at school are working on and make sure you stay in touch with the teachers. Explain to your child that you are going to leave gaps when you read and let your child fill it in, especially good for nursery rhymes and stories your child is very familiar with
  • Pretend to be a character from the book
  • Make sure that the child’s vocabulary is developing, that they understand the book and any new words in the book.
  • Follow the words with your finger when you are reading. When a child is reading, make sure that they do the same thing.
  • Have a reading time when everyone reads. You may wish to read with your child or set an example by reading on your own.
  • Don't rely simply on site words. Phonics are very important when coming accross a word that hasn't been encountered before.

When Writing…
  • Make up stories. Write down what you did that day. Every day write a few sentences, and go back and read what you have written with your child before. Sentences can be things like “I helped mommy make dinner tonight. We mashed the potatoes and pealed the corn. I had fun.” In a few days you can go back and read that with your child again. Your child will be more enthused about reading if it is their own writing or thoughts.
  • Find a picture book and make up a story to go along with it.
  • Don’t limit writing to pencils all of the time. It can also be cutting out letters and gluing them together, using markers, crayons, spelling things with letters from household objects, writing in shaving creme etc.
Fun things to do…
  • Let your child pick one magazine subscription. If they chose the magazine they are more likely to want to read it.
  • If your child is learning English as a second language, play a matching game. Put the word they know in their first language on a card and the English word on another card. Have your child match the two words. You can take turns and see who can get the most matches.
  • Have some area of your house, a discreet table or something like that, full of letters, whenever you walk by the table rearrange the letters to spell something different and encourage your child to do the same thing.
  • Encourage activities that involve reading, such as baking and arts and crafts.
  • Write letters to your child and have them write letters back. Leave the letters around the house. Help your child read your notes to them and have them help you read their notes.
  • Find a pen pal for your child. Let your child write notes back and forth with another child to encourage both of them to read, if you know many children that have a large interest in reading, you might have them each have a secret person that they write notes to wishing them a good day and other nice things, then at the end of a set time period, let them find out who was writing to who.
  • situations during the day to encourage reading. When cooking you may ask your child to pass you something that starts with a “b” meaning butter, or other things to get them to guess what you mean giving them hints about what the letters are.
Encouraging your child to want to read…
  • Reward your child for reading with a new book.
  • Help your child know their name. It is something they will definitely want to be able to read and write
  • Keep a list or record somewhere of the various words that your child can read, you may want to keep a pile of index cards (especially easy for them to notice when they are getting more), or just a list. When the child sees how many words they know they will be pleased and eager to learn more. You can also review the words and add some new ones for them to learn if you wish.
  • Keep a list of books that your child has read
Five finger Test Test your book. Read a page
Put up a finger for each word you don’t know then read below.
Number of fingers:
1. Easy to read. Have fun!
2. Just right. Enjoy!
3. Challenging. But, try it you will like it.
4. Very challenging. Read with a partner
5. Too hard, save it for later or have someone read it for you.