Encouraging Your Child To Read

Encouraging your child to read more at home is really quite simple. Try the “Four Quick Tips” listed below to help your child become a successful reader. Also, you may have heard of the 3 R’s, but have you outfitted your home with the 3 B’s? Noted reading expert, Jim Trelease, calls the 3 B’s his at-home reading kit.

Four Quick Tips

1. Read to your child every day. Read everything you can, including package labels, street and truck signs, and billboards.

2. Fill your home with things to read. Children love to read books, magazines, newspapers, and comics.

3. Have paper and pencils on hand. Children begin their curiosity about written language by scribbling and drawing. Later, they develop an interest in copying objects and letters of the alphabet.

4. Build their interest by:
- praising their efforts to read and write;
- answering endless questions; and
- displaying their work in a prominent place.

The Three “B’s”

The first B is for Books: Choose books according to your child’s interests. Your local library is a good source of free books to borrow. Also, buy a special book for your child and write his or her name inside the cover. Sometimes owning a book (that doesn’t need to be returned to the library or shared with a sibling) can be very special to your child.

The second B is for Book basket: Have several baskets filled with books, magazines, comics, and newspapers around different places in your home. The National Assessment of Educational Progress studies report that the more printed materials found in a child’s home, the higher the student’s reading, writing, and math skills will be.

The third B is for Bed lamp: Does your child have a bed lamp or reading light? Let your child stay up an extra 15 minutes (or longer depending on the age of the child) each night IF they want to read in bed. Most children will do anything to stay up later—even read!

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Copyright 1998-2004 Phil Tulga

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