Just as our kids constantly learn so much from their surroundings, reading for kids put their minds to work. As they soak in the stories, they make connections through what they hear and see. Teaching a child to read is all about exploring different worlds together. While there is enough evidence on the benefits of developing reading skills on a child’s development, one must remember, teaching kids to read is a process.
Reading for preschoolers should be a fun experience. As every child learns to read at their own time or pace, you need to find creative ways to inculcate good reading habits in children.
These simple ways of encouraging good reading habits in school children have, over the years, fostered enthusiastic readers.
Read to your child
Read together with your child every day. Simple reading for kids can get them interested in stories. While a daily routine of story reading for kids will instill a love for books in them, it also gives you time to bond with your child in a special way.
Role model good reading habits
Creating interest in books begins at home. Let your children see you read every day, even if it’s for just a few minutes. Read anything! Young children love to imitate. So seeing you read will show that reading is something that everyone does.
Interactive story reading for kids
Have fun while reading to your child. With preschoolers, turn your kindergarten stories into a show. Sing, dance, be funny, cry, exaggerate! Bring the characters alive with different voices and expressions. Remember, how you read to them is even more important. A little bit of drama entertains and improves the child’s understanding.
Storytelling for developing reading skills
Picture books create magic. While you narrate a story using the text, your child sees a whole other story through the art. Ask questions! Encourage your children to share what they see. Every image can tell short stories for kids to read. Images by themselves create curiosity. Kids can read them and discover the plots merely by observing them. It not only helps build vocabulary but also encourages the child to interact with books.
Letting your child choose
Children are more excited when they get to choose what to read. Set up a library at home or get them excited around trips to the bookstore. Pick out books your child might enjoy, and let them choose what to read together. Be prepared for your child to surprise you with their tastes and opinions. Encourage them to talk about the chosen books. Have them share what they liked about it. If your child wants to repeat a book, go ahead, do it! Repetition, reading words with the same letters and their combinations, and seeing them multiple times helps them practice their reading skills.
Short stories for kids to read with relatable content
Introducing children to diversity through books will prepare them for the diverse world that they will encounter. However, with early learners, especially while reading for preschoolers, choose books that help children see themselves. They will imagine themselves in the story. When children encounter books where they see a reflection of themselves, they feel comfortable. It also builds confidence in children when they see that all aspects of them are accepted and valued.
Incorporate multiple senses of development
Hands-on activities during early childhood development make learning more meaningful, and retention is longer as it includes multiples areas of development. When developing reading skills, implement activities that incorporate as many senses as possible. There are many ways to do this with your preschoolers. Kutuki kids learning app offers interactive stories, engaging rhymes, and games with attractive animations and illustrations to meet the learning needs of preschoolers.
Phonics accelerates journeys of children learning reading
Phonics is all about learning letters and their sounds. Though children recognize letters, they may not necessarily know how they sound. As English is not a phonetic language, unlike other regional languages in India, activities that focus on English reading for kids should focus on helping children connect letters with their sounds. Use creative tools and strategies to engage your child with letter sounds. Creating a multi-sensory experience will lay the foundation for how children will start forming words while reading, speaking, and writing in due course.
Teaching kids to read everywhere
Whether you are at home or out in the store with your child, point out labels, signs, or billboards to them. Spell the letters and make their sounds, joining them to pronounce the words they come across. Identifying words that they are already familiar with, prompted by using pictures, where appropriate, is a great way to start.
Don’t make reading for kids a tedious experience
Reading experience should create a sense of joy and be something the child looks forward to doing. If you sense your child is losing interest or not paying attention when you’re reading together- take a break! You don’t want to make reading feel like work.
Finally, patience and persistence go a long way. Setting unrealistic expectations will only overwhelm your child. At the end of the day, the importance of reading for kids is to create a fun, beautiful, engaging, and inspiring experience for your child.