Now let’s try to take a different approach. Let’s hear my story, Anushka…
As a mother, my journey with my son in pursuit of forming good reading habits started not as an objective to accomplish anything but something to bond over. I always felt that maybe my child isn’t expressive because I am not equipping him to be that way. How do you express without the right vocabulary? So I found ways through interactive activities like word puzzles for sight words, cut and paste activities for blending words et al which made him talk and thats how we started our journey towards becoming fond readers.
Here are a few tips that worked brilliantly for me…
TIP #1 USE CREATIVE RESOURCES
I understand that my son reacts better to short term challenges and more activity based learning. So when we started reading, I researched a lot. I created worksheets on sounds of alphabets, blends etc using some e-resources which made the job exciting for him.
TIP #2 CREATE ATTRACTION
My kid never enjoyed my story telling sessions. I always felt I was never dramatic enough or didn’t have a knack for it. So I had this huge collection of books which I would collect for my kid and put them in such a place in his room that he would notice them. The big pictures would attract him and so my experiment worked. He started asking for books to see pictures and this way he got inquisitive about what the story was all about and I would read to him.
TIP #3 ITS ALRIGHT IF YOUR CHILD DOESN’T SIT THROUGH THE ENTIRE BOOK
Most of the time we would end up not finishing a book. He would be attracted to another one mid way or lose interest half way through. But I never forced him to let me finish the book. Like I said it was bonding time for us, so I would be happy to move on but in this process he was slowly getting more patient over a period of time to finish one book.
TIP #4 BE AN ORGANISED TEACHER
As a teacher creates a curriculum for her subject, so should you. With the help of good resource material and taking a cue from the schools pattern, first create a framework. Like I plan my reading time with my son. We start with ice breakers which are simple paper activities which are easy for him. Then when he is in high spirits we move up with reading sheets, writing practice and so on.
TIP #5 PERSONAL READING TIME
This is something that I had to inculcate in him as it hasn’t come to him naturally. I let him pick up any book, which not to my surprise, many a times was the book he had already read a couple of times. But I let him read it without my supervision. My objective with this was that like gadgets he should realise that books too can help you pass time and be fun!
TIP #6 OFFER REWARDS
I realise that when I make reading or for that matter any learning process reward based, my son is motivated and shows better results. Rewards are mostly like playing some board games or currently DIY experiments. At times, I simply try to make a big fuss about how well he did. Even the books that he was introduced to early on, were given to him as a mark of achievement. So that they would be treasured by him like he has earned them.
TIP #7 CHOOSE THE RIGHT BOOKS
Take time to create a quality reading list. Don’t overwhelm your child with books they can’t understand as it really brings their morale down. Trust me, no matter what your child’s reading level is, there are tonnes of books out there. Just google harder!
TIP #8 HEALTHY COMPETITION
I often show my child videos of kids reading with fluency who are his age. I don’t ever say to him to be like them, but what I do say is that why don’t we work harder and try to reach that level. This opens his horizon to goals he can achieve and it worked for us.
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Have a great day!
DISCLAIMER : The above tips are valid for any language you would like to teach your children. And in no way does this post aims to undermine the beauty of any other language.