Who is with me? Teaching a child to read can be quite scary. Here are some ways how to get started teaching your child to read and on a journey to love reading for a lifetime.
Teaching kids can be super challenging, and it can be equally as rewarding once you start seeing your child’s progress. A parent can see a child’s future capabilities once they are able to sound out words and piece letters together.
They learn so much when they are little, don’t they? It has been said that humans (proportionately) learn more within the first five years of life than they do in another life period.
Children absorb so much. If you think about it for a moment, it will astonish you. They learn how to grasp, make sounds, the art of wanting and needing, putting things in their mouths, saying “no”, walk, run, jump, rollover, and so much more. The amount they can learn is incredible as their minds are sponges during these times.
This is a perfect time to begin preparing your child for reading. Believe it or not, the benefits of starting as early as possible are great.
Unfortunately, on the contrary, if you choose to start teaching to read later as opposed to earlier it can be even more of a challenge.
To equip children with what they need to read well, it does not have to be complicated, but it is worth the effort to make some efforts to help.
Here are a few ways to get started teaching your child to read:
1. Read to your child.
Every day is an opportunity to read to your child. Some parents even start reading to their children in the womb. If you don’t like to read aloud though, you are not alone. Many homeschool moms don’t enjoy reading aloud, but we have some great tips for the mom who doesn’t like to read aloud in their homeschool.
2. Every little bit when they are little can help.
Pre-reading activities will definitely assist you in laying the groundwork reading success, even before kids are taught the alphabet. Activities like visual discrimination can prepare kids for reading.
For example, fun activities and hands-on experiences where children can spot differences and similarities between objects can train them to remember more easily when learning letters and letter shapes.
Ready to Read – Reading Readiness Signs and Checklist | The Reading Mama
Pre-Reading Printables, Activities, and Games for Kids | Encouraging Moms at Home
FREE Teach Pre-Reading Skills With Visual Discrimination Cards | Stay-at-Home Educator
Fruit Voice to Print Pack FREE | The Measured Mom
All About Reading Pre Reading Review + Unboxing | Fun with Mama
3. Ask them questions about what you are reading along the way.
Asking questions assures they are paying attention and it helps them to think about how the words make sense in preparation for their own reading experience.
4. Read for yourself.
Be an example for your children. Allow them to see you reading and loving it. Talk about how much you enjoy it. Train them in the way they should go by your example. If you are a Christian, it’s important to set an example of reading your Bible too.
5. Practice letter recognition.
Getting kids to recognize letters is a great beginner. These resources will help you start that recognition process.
6. Use alphabet crafts and songs to learn about letters.
Basically, use as many hands-o activities as possible so your child can experience letters by knowing them, not just memorizing them. Activities can help with fine motor skills, gross motor skills, and memory.
FREE List: 200+ Materials for Preschool Letter Activities And Collages | Early Learning Ideas
Paper Cups Preschool Letter Recognition Activity | Planning Play Time
Alphabet Fine Motor Fun | childhood 101
Tracing Letters with Water | This Little Home of Mine
Marshmallow and Toothpick Alphabet Building Challenge | Play Teach Repeat
10 Letter recognition activities | The Measured Mom
7. Begin practicing phonemic awareness and phonics.
Phonemic awareness is learning to spell sounds for reading and spelling. Phonemic awareness and phonics begin with phonemes, which are the smallest sounds in our language. They are the short/long vowel sounds, digraphs, and consonants.
LIMITED TIME Subscriber FREEBIE 150+ Phonics Worksheets | Kindergarten Mom
Easy and FREE Beginning Letter Sound Match | You’ve Got this Math
Letter Sounds Listening Game | East TN Family
FREE Phonics Books for Teaching Reading | The Measured Mom
8. Decoding to put the letters together.
When your children sound out words they are practicing “decoding” words. Once your child can sound out each letter, they can now begin sounding out short words like bat, cat, top, etc.
FREE and Affordable Decodable Readers | Carissa Taylor
Learn To Read -Word Patterns Activity | Mrs. Jones Creation Station
9. Sight words will help them with fluency.
Sight words are also known as high-frequency words. They are words that show up in young learner reading materials often.
They are some of the most common words in our language. Sight words are words for kids to memorize in order to begin reading fluently.
FREE Printable Sight Word Flashcards | Teaching Littles
Sight Word Bingo (FREE Printable) | The Happy Housewife
FREE Pre-K Dolch Sight Words Worksheets | Little Dots Education
FREE Printable: ‘Read, Build, Write’ Mat With Sight Words | Free and Unfettered
Dolch Sight Word Flash Cards FREE Printable | Learning Ideas for Parents
10. Provide PLENTY of practice.
FREE Printable Emergent Reader Mini Books | Learning online Blog
18 FREE Color and Read Emergent Readers (Updated and Expanded!) | This Reading Mama
52 FREE Emergent Readers For All Year Long | Teach Junkie
Mini Printable (FREE) Booklets to Teach Reading | ThoughtCo.
FREE Printable Books for Beginning Readers – Level 1 (Easy) | Frugal Fun for Boys and Girls
Learn to Read with BOB Books FREE Printables | Royal Baloo
Teach Your Child to Read – FREE Flash Cards! | Blue Manor
Montessori Pink Reading Series Teaching Manual FREE | Montessori Global
FREE Early Reading Comprehension Skills Pages – [I Can Read] | Kaitlynn Albani
…and with all of these intentional practices, don’t forget to make learning to read fun. There really is nothing worse than starting early in making learning to read a drag. The resources below can help make lessons engaging and motivating:
FREE Printable Color Your Own Space Bookmarks and Reading Log for Kids | Real Life at Home
FREE Reading Log Printable | Balancing Home
Teach a Child to Read FREE Cheat Sheet | The Classroom Key
FREE Printable Reading Log | 4 Kinder Teachers
Reading is truly a journey that can take their imaginations to different places. Reading is such an important part of our lives, it is beneficial for our children to begin experiencing it with a positive outlook.
Jeannette is a wife, mother and homeschooling mom. She has been mightily, saved by grace and is grateful for God’s sovereignty throughout her life’s journey. She has a Bachelor in English Education and her MBA. Jeannette is bi-lingual and currently lives in the Tongan Islands of the South Pacific. She posts daily freebies for homeschoolers!