Parents who might be intimidated by the idea of teaching their child to read, don’t be!
Though a seemingly daunting task, teaching reading can be a fun and extremely rewarding activity. There are several different ways to work on reading skills with your child. Some methods and activities will work better than others. Here are some ways to approach reading in your home as you determine what works best for your child.
Ideas for your Toolkit
Use a formal reading program.
Teach Your Child to Read in 100 Easy Lessons, reading made easy, All About Reading. There are many reading programs available to you as homeschoolers. You may wish to find a curriculum review site and find out what others are saying. You can also read about each program on their own personal web sites. If you go this route, realize that you may get a quarter of the way in and discover that this method does not work for your child. That is okay! Be willing to try something else or set it aside for a while until your child is more ready for formal instruction.
No matter which program you’re using, or even if you choose not to use one at all, you can add other resources to your days that will re-enforce learning. A young daughter may really enjoy workbooks, and pull it out at random times and complete a few pages, all with a smile on her face. This may not be the case for everyone, that’s just her. If your child does not enjoy workbooks perhaps he will enjoy reading Bob books, working through flash cards, or playing games like boggle junior and scrabble junior with you or his siblings. Or, wait a while. Putting off reading instruction until your child is ready can also help to re-enforce learning the skill whenever he is ready to read. Moving at his or her pace will make learning easier on you and your child, and will also help your little one keep the love for learning that he naturally already possesses.
Introduce copy work.
Daily copy work accomplishes many things at once. Your child will be reading and writing correctly spelled words. Their handwriting will likely improve. Handwriting can improve within a month of beginning a homeschool journey, through completing copy work each day. This can be a paragraph for older children or even just a short phrase for your younger children. A few words written neatly and correctly is much better than many words on a page that are misspelled and messily written. Your child will also begin to recognize what a good paragraph sounds and looks like, simply from reading and writing her copy work passage each day. You may choose passages from the bible (which will also help to work on scripture memory!), a paragraph from a favorite storybook, or even purchase an actual copy work curriculum.
Read good books.
It has been said for years that one important key to teaching children to read is to read lots of good books to them. Another saying is that to instill a love of reading in your child, you should be a reader yourself. These may not be true for all, but it could be in your home. As a family, read lots of great books together and your children may also become great readers.
How do you teach or improve reading skills in your homeschool?
Share your tips and favorite resources with us in the comments below!
Check out this article on the “Benefits of Reading Aloud“, for more information on getting your children to read.
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To further your reading, we have a special ebook that we would like to send to you. It’s entitled “RETHINK EDUCATION, Turning Scary Questions About Home Education Into Exciting Possibilities.” It was written after countless conversations with moms who are either considering homeschooling or struggling with doubt. My heart in writing it is to offer hopeful answers to some of the questions moms tend to be asking… and you might be surprised at which ones didn’t make the list. I would love for it to become a resource you could share with your friends who are considering home education, or who are wondering if they’ll keep going. So, grab your copy today! – Leslie Nunnery