1. If your child says, "I don't like reading," it may be that we just have not found the right books for the child. You can do the following things:
- Find out your child's reading level by asking the teacher. Find books on your child's level. She may not like reading because the books in her hands are frustrating. If you get her matched to books at her level, the frustration will lessen and the joy will increase.
- Find out the topics your child loves and then search for texts about those topics at the library and bookstore. Ask the librarian or specialist in the children's section at the store to help you find the right texts.
2. If your child has trouble decoding here are things you can say and do to support them.
- Give some wait time. Count to three or five in your mind. Let the child read on to the end of the sentence. They often will be able to self-correct their own error.
- If they do not notice their error or have trouble self-correcting it, you can ask, "What strategy can you try?", "try something," or one of the following:
"Look at the picture"
"What word would make sense here?"
"What word would sound right here?"
"What word would make sense that starts with that letter?"
"Look for parts you know."
3. If your child has trouble with reading comprehension, meaning she can read all the words just fine but has trouble retelling the text or making inferences (how/why questions for example), here are a few things you can do:
- Be a reading partner to your child. Read some of the same books your child is reading. Then, after your child finishes a chapter or a section of the text, ask her to retell it to you or as a few how or why questions. You can use the questions below in any book to start up conversation. Remember, you want to start a conversation with open-ended rather than specific "quiz-type" questions.
- In fiction text, you can ask...
- What just happened?
- What do you think will happen next? Why do you think that will happen?
How do you think the character feels? Why do you think he feels that way?
What is this part mostly about?
What is this really about?
- In non-fiction text, you can ask...
The above was adapted from the Blog of Sarah Picard Taylor.
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