With all the changes we have gone through in the past year, one that many parents are struggling with when home schooling or partially home schooling their children during the pandemic, is literacy. Even parents who have their children in pre-school or daycare, are worried about their children falling behind when it comes to their literacy. The good news is, there are many ways that parents can support the development of literacy in their children during these times, and many of those ways can be fun!
Create a reading space
Setting up a reading environment where children are comfortable and quiet is important. Check out our ideas in this month’s newsletter for constructing a comfortable and fun reading nook. Read aloud to your child, it models fluency, tone, and expression so they can learn to read like you do. Most children love hearing stories and hearing how their parents become the characters that are in the book (we all have our inner acting characteristics in us) Point to things in the book as you read the words or have them do the same, making the connection between words and pictures. Depending on the age of your child, listen to them reading aloud and help them sound things out. Reading aloud helps them work on fluency. For young children have them tell you a story or have them draw out a story and then write the story below it. Read them the story they have told you aloud. Have lots of books available at their reading level. If you are unsure of their level, go to Scholastics Book Wizard for a great tool to assist you. Ensure there is a range of books with stories they enjoy and although it may be boring for us as parents to hear the same story over and over, reading the same book over and over helps children to learn words quicker! Reading to your child daily is a rewarding experience – my favorite time of day was reading to my own daughter each night. She would negotiate the number of books for me to read her…always starting at 10 books and settling on 3. Now that she is grown, she still remembers her favorite books we read all those years ago.
In addition to practicing reading, writing should be practiced often. Play with words and make it fun! For example, use fridge magnet letters, play scrabble or boggle. There are also many resources on Pinterest or other sites to use to help with site words and or fun vocabulary games.
Looking for more assistance and inspiration to keep your child’s literacy developing? CBC.ca is offering access to curio.ca for free during the pandemic for all – on the site you have access to educational curriculum to support your child’s learning.