Sometimes we think that our children are not as good at reading as we would like them to be or thought they would be. Whether due to the child’s lack of will or difficulties in the learning process, this seems to cause guardians, whether parents or teachers, a feeling of helplessness that can lead to stress and anxiety, both in the child and in the adult. This could lead to less productive reading experiences. Therefore, here we offer some ideas to improve children’s reading.
Ideas to improve reading in children
Materlu offers some ideas that you can apply to improve children’s reading:
- Modeling behavior: Children often imitate their parents, so if they see you reading frequently, they are more likely to become interested in reading too.
- Create an attractive reading environment: Create a cozy reading corner at home with cushions, blankets, and shelves full of interesting books for children of different ages. If reading becomes monotonous on the couch or dining room table, change locations. Whether on their parent’s or sister’s bed, in the kitchen, or in the pantry… Change location! Leave the house and sit on a garden bench, go to the beach, and lie under the shade of a big tree.
- Choose suitable books: Look for books that fit their interests. If they like animals, look for books about nature. If they like fantasy, look for magical stories. It is important that, to progress and become motivated, the level of difficulty and the challenge is appropriate.
- Read aloud: Reading aloud is an excellent way to enjoy a book together, and improve your children’s reading comprehension and fluency, as well as interpretation and pronunciation.
- Organize family reading sessions: Choose a time each day or week for the entire family or for one member to sit down and read with the child.
- Explore different genres: Don’t limit yourself to just one genre. Introduce your children to different literary styles so they discover their preferences. At Materlu there is a selection of personalized stories inspired by different themes.
- Ask questions and talk about the reading: After reading a book, discuss the story, characters, and what you liked most. This will help strengthen memory, comprehension, critical thinking, and imagination.
- Encourage writing: Encourage your children to write stories or journals. Writing is also a way to improve reading comprehension. Materlu advises writing summaries about your favorite part of the book, making up alternative endings, or writing new stories inspired by those already read.
Remember that each child is unique, so it is important to adapt these strategies to your children’s interests and preferences. The most important thing is that reading is perceived as a pleasant and enriching activity, so that they can enjoy it and improve children’s reading.
Things NOT to do during the reading learning process:
During the process of learning to read, it is important to avoid certain practices that can be counterproductive or discouraging. Here are some things not to do when trying to improve children’s reading:
1. Don’t stress!
Grab a book, sit down, and read it with your child. Make reading a wonderful learning experience.
The easiest way to encourage children to engage in reading is to relax during the process. Naturally, stress increases when we see that our children are not learning to read at the speed we would like. This can be passed on to children, which can translate into bad experiences. Location and time of day affect this experience. It would be ideal to find a time and space in which concentration is at its peak.
2. Do not compare with other children
Avoid comparing children to others, in terms of reading speed or skill level. Everyone has their own learning pace, and comparisons can generate anxiety and affect their self-esteem.
3. Do not ridicule or shame
Never ridicule or shame a child for making mistakes when reading aloud or trying to decipher words. Mistakes are part of the learning process, and it is important to create a supportive and encouraging environment.
4. Do not use reading as punishment
Don’t use reading as a form of punishment. Doing so can associate reading with negative feelings and decrease the student’s interest in learning.
5. Do not focus solely on speed
Do not focus solely on increasing your reading speed. Comprehension and enjoyment of reading are equally important. Encouraging speed alone can lead to poor comprehension and meaningless mechanical reading.
6. Avoid excess pressure
Children should not be pressured with excessive reading assignments or unrealistic expectations. This can generate stress, anxiety, and demotivation, instead of creating desire and emotion.
7. Do not ignore difficulties
Difficulties are not ignored or minimized. Additional support should be offered with specific interventions. You can consult with an educational professional.
8. Do not limit their reading options and avoid monotony
Do not limit their choice of books to only those you consider “appropriate.” Students should have the freedom to choose books that interest them and motivate them to read. Make sure reading activities are varied and attractive. Don’t let reading become a boring and repetitive task
By avoiding these practices and instead adopting a positive, encouraging, and flexible approach to the reading learning process, students will be more motivated and enjoy an environment conducive to improving their reading skills significantly.
Relax and enjoy the reading journey with Materlu. Reading is not only an essential life skill, but also an enriching and enjoyable experience. The process of learning and improve children’s reading with time and effort. It is a journey worth taking.
Instead of focusing solely on achieving specific goals or quick results, it is essential to enjoy the reading process, explore different genres, discover new authors, and allow curiosity to guide us toward new books and topics.
When we are teaching our children to read, let us remember that every step along the way is valuable. Celebrating achievements, learning from challenges and maintaining a positive attitude will allow us to make the most of the wonderful adventure that reading offers us. So, sit back, immerse yourself in the pages of a book, and enjoy everything reading has to offer. Happy reading!