10 things your child should know before learning to read: (This is called READING READINESS which includes signs that show your child is ready to learn to read on his own.)
Holds the book upright and knows how to turn the pages.
Knows some or most sounds of the alphabet letters. It’s o.k. that he knows only a few of the letter sounds. What’s important is that he realizes that different letters make different sounds. He may be able to recognize some simple whole words.
Understands that letters are written in two ways: upper and lower case.
Enjoys having stories read to him.
Can fill in, in his own words, the missing part or parts of a story he has heard often.
Recognizes and understands signs outside of the home: stop signs, logos, cereals, no dogs allowed, etc.
Pretends to read more often than before.
Often asks, “What does that say?” when looking at something written.
Pretends to read by turning the pages and ‘reading’ the story.
Can interpret and tell about the pictures in a book.
Keep on reading to your child as often as possible. It may take time away from your busy schedule, but try to be consistent. If it’s a bedtime story, then try to make it a bedtime story every night, especially if he looks forward to this time and even if he asks for a particular book time and time again. After all, you want this reading time to be an enjoyable experience for your child.
Do you want to raise a reader? Then you must read, read, read and then read some more. Provide interesting books that will grab your child’s attention. Read aloud with expression and enjoyment so that your child can see and hear how text should be read. Keep in mind that you are the reading role model. You may even notice your child ‘pretend’ reading aloud with the same expression and intonation you use.
Remember that children develop at different rates, so do not compare your child to others if you notice other children the same age are already reading. Your child will learn to read if he enjoys books and you make reading a priority in your home. Happy reading!