How to help your little one read
Literacy is a fundamental skill that enables individuals to access information, communicate effectively and participate in society.. However, some children may struggle with reading, and parents may wonder why their children find it challenging.
Here are some tips to help your little one with their reading:
Developmental Delays in Communication and Language
One of the primary reasons why some children struggle with reading is due to developmental delays in communication and language.
Language development begins at an early age, and children who have not been exposed to enough language may struggle with reading later on.
Talk, talk, talk! Your little one loves to hear your voice, the tone, intonations and rhythms that your voice makes. As you do this, your little one is going to be exposed to more and more words that will help add to their vocabulary. Encourage them to repeat the words after you!
Poor hearing can also affect a child's ability to hear sounds and distinguish between different sounds, which is critical for phonics-based reading instruction. If you suspect that your child may have a hearing problem, consult with a medical professional to get their hearing checked.
Phonics is a teaching method that emphasises the relationship between letters and sounds. For children who struggle with reading, phonics instruction may be challenging because they have difficulty recognising letter sounds.
Children who have difficulty with phonics may benefit from alternative methods of reading instruction, such as focusing on the meaning of words rather than the sounds of letters.
You can easily incorporate phonics into every day situations, and you can make it fun too! For example, when you are at the supermarket, ask your little one "Should we get some b, b, b, bananas?" and encourage them to repeat after you!
Reading books together
Reading difficulties, such as dyslexia, can make it challenging for children to read. Dyslexia is a common learning difficulty, affecting around 10% of the population.
Dyslexia is often characterised by difficulties in decoding words, spelling, and reading fluency. Children with dyslexia may also struggle with phonics-based reading instruction.
Children who are not exposed to books may struggle with reading. Books provide children with a wealth of knowledge and vocabulary, which is essential for reading comprehension.
Reading with your little one from a young age can help to foster a love of reading and build a strong foundation for literacy. Let your little one choose a book to read - this doesn't mean looking at the words necessarily. It can also mean looking at the pictures, describing what they see, pointing at different objects, asking them open ended questions such as "Where do you think the Mouse is going?".
It's never too late to start reading with your child, so if you haven't already, start by selecting some age-appropriate books and read together for a few minutes each day.
Each Child is Unique
Every child is unique and has their own learning style and pace. If you have concerns about your child's reading abilities, seek support from their teacher or a reading specialist.
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