It’s important to build solid reading comprehension abilities early in life. The earlier you form a strong grasp of the written word, the better equipped you’ll be to succeed in educational environments and professional settings. In short, the sooner children are guided down the path of reading comprehension, the better. However, not all kids are equally receptive to reading lessons, with some requiring a much greater level of guidance than others. While teaching children how to read can often be an uphill battle, there are numerous steps parents and educators can take to make the process easier for everyone involved.
Make Reading Practice Part of the Daily Routine
As any seasoned parent can attest, children thrive on routine. A solid routine provides kids with a sense of structure and security and ensures that they have a general idea of what to expect each day. That being the case, incorporating reading lessons into a child’s daily routine can do wonders for their overall literacy. These lessons can occur at the beginning of the day or right before bed – provided, of course, you’re consistent. If reading practice occurs at inconsistent times or is frequently skipped altogether, a child will likely be less willing to participate. While many children may initially be hesitant to make reading a part of their daily routine, it shouldn’t take more than a week or two for them to become acclimated to it. Additionally, even if a child proves incredibly unreceptive to the idea of daily reading, it behooves parents and educators to remain committed.
Incorporate Visual Aids
Given their undeveloped reading skills, most children are visual learners. In order to fully grasp a concept, they require helpful visual aids. With this in mind, keep an assortment of photos, drawings and other visuals on hand when administering reading lessons. Visual aids are particularly important when teaching children new words, as they enable them to associate images with those terms. Blended learning resources can prove exceedingly helpful in the development of good word association.
Enact a Reward System
Children tend to be more motivated if a reward hangs in the balance. If you provide a child with something to work towards, he or she is liable to become a lot more receptive to daily reading lessons. For example, for every book a child successfully finishes, a trip to a favorite hotspot or the purchase of a small gift may be in order. Telling a child that their efforts will pay off later in life is unlikely to motivate them in the same way as a tangible reward they can enjoy in the present moment.
Strong reading comprehension can serve people well in a variety of areas. Whether it’s school, work or basic socializing, reading skills are an absolute must for anyone who wishes to thrive in modern-day society. Unsurprisingly, children who are taught to read at a young age tend to have much higher literacy levels than kids whose parents put reading on the backburner. Parents and educators looking for effective ways to help children build reading comprehension can benefit from the steps discussed above.