How to Teach Children to Read: A Complete Guide for Parents

How to Teach Children to Read: The Complete Guide for ParentsReading is becoming more difficult for children in the United States. In fact, 25 million kids cannot read at a proficient level, according to test results.

If you want to teach children how to read, it may be worth it to improve reading skills before they enter school or outside of the classroom.

Unsure how? I’m here to help!

As you might already know, I’m a bestselling personal development author with about 2 million books sold globally.

Plus I founded the therapist recommended video course called The Anxiety Cure.

I love sharing tools to help people to live their calmest and happiest lives.

And as a mom, I know how stressful it can be to teach your kids to read – so I wrote this article with tips to help!

7 Tips to Teach Children to Read

Here are some ways that you can get started with stories and reading for children of any age.

1. Utilize Letter Sounds

Rather than focusing on learning the names of letters, sounding them out is more important when children first learn to read. Having to take in twice the information can be confusing to a beginner.

Reading aloud and pointing to the letters will help them associate the sounds with the correct letter. You can also make flashcards or use digital flashcards to review all of the sounds. This will allow you to hone in on the letters that your children may struggle with.

Letter sounds are an essential building block because they also help when you introduce unfamiliar words. Children can sound a word out and have a better chance to figure out the word themselves.

Once your children master the letter sounds, you can move on to more complex phonics methods, like grouping letters together to form other sounds. There are many types of reading materials that emphasize phonics.

2. Practice Sight Words

Since English is such a complex language, there are many exceptions to normal grammar and spelling rules. It is vital that you teach your children sight words along with regular spelling conventions.

When you read aloud with your children, make sure to always point out common sight words. The more exposure they have to the sight words, the easier it will be for them to digest them and integrate them into their normal reading habit.

With online resources or guides, you can find out which sight words to focus on first. There are also many lists with levels of sight words appropriate for school grades or reading experience.

3. Use Other Methods Besides Books

Although books are a great way for children to engage with a topic or story, they are not the only method for reading. With the advent of technology, there are many other tools that can improve reading skills.

For instance, apps like Bookbot provide books and audiobooks through a digital platform. Your children can have all of the reading resources they need while on the go.

Find ways to incorporate reading more into your everyday life and habits. Something as simple as turning on television and movie subtitles will allow your children more exposure to reading opportunities.

Many websites, apps, and digital games focus on developing good reading skills through elements such as word searches and phonics. These are wonderful when used in conjunction with more traditional reading methods.

4. Make It a Habit

When you teach children to read, you should not let them think of it as a chore. Make sure they know that reading can be enjoyable, educational, and fun.

Like any hobby, you can foster reading by creating a habit. Set a goal for a time period every day or a number of pages to read. This can vary depending on their reading level or how much they need to work on.

Allow them to choose reading material that interests them. You can also try to find educational reading material that they will enjoy or activity books that encourage interaction.

Setting habits are also successful if you have some sort of reward system in place. A sticker chart or even tracking through an app can incentivize children to read on their own to form a daily habit.

5. Read Outside of School

If your children are enrolled in school, they probably read quite a bit during their school day. However, it is important to read outside of the classroom as well.

Skills obtained at school need to be fostered in your home environment. Try to actively work with your child every day and practice shared reading. You can also learn about the types of materials teachers use and get similar resources.

6. Set a Good Example

Children do not want to read if they see adults in their lives who are always on the phone or computer. Although it may be difficult, put down the technology and pick up a book instead.

Your children may be more excited to read if they see you reading your own material. Books or magazines are a better option than a screen when you have time to relax during the day.

Try taking it a step further and scheduling screen-free reading time for the whole family. Make a rule that you cannot have devices out while you read for a designated period, like an hour. This is also a great way to bond and form a shared habit.

7. Get a Library Card

Books are an amazing thing for children to have, but they can also be an expensive investment. A library card is a great way to get unlimited access to books and other resources for your children without the prohibitive cost.

Make it a priority to visit the library regularly and pick up books and activities for your children. Showing them how libraries work and taking responsibility for books is also a great way to teach personal responsibility.

Many libraries also have reading challenges during the summer that children can participate in for prizes. Check with your library to see if they have any interactive programs for your children.

Teach Children How to Read Today

If you want to teach children how to read, you should not feel intimidated by the process. You can have your children reading in no time with these tips and tricks. Would you like to learn more about how you can improve your brain health and education? My site and inspiring Instagram posts share lots more helpful information!

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