Hearing Your Child Read
A Caring Christian Family Where We Grow Together
Let Your Light Shine ~ Matthew 5:16
How to use their ‘Reading Record’ Book:
This book should be used to build up a picture of your child as a reader. It should also be thought of as a written conversation between you and your child’s class teacher. After hearing your child read, you should write a comment about how your child read. Sometimes your child may want to add their own comment or draw a face to show how much they liked the book.
Ways to help at home:
The following activities should be part of reading with your child and not seen as extras. You should aim to hear your child read at least five times a week, but daily would be wonderful. It doesn’t always have to be their reading scheme book, in fact lots of research shows that the more stories children hear the better writers they become. It is also important to let your child see you read for pleasure too.
For children who are just beginning to read:
Choose a calm, quiet time to share a book together.
Allow time to talk to your child about the book before you start ~ Discuss the cover, title and pictures before reading the book.
Read books aloud and gradually encourage your child to join in with you.
Sometimes read the book to your child first, to model fluency and expression
Afterwards ask your child about the book ~ Did they enjoy it? What was their favourite part?
After reading a book, re-read it, pointing out words together.
Sound out simple words not complex ones.
Try pausing before the end of a sentence or before an obvious word. Encourage your child to make a sensible guess at the word. This might not be correct but if the word they offer makes sense, give your child lots of praise.
Use the context of the story to predict what might happen next.
Re-read their favourite books or books they find difficult. Repetition is an important way of helping your child to remember written words.
For children who are beginning to read with fluency:
Continue to read aloud with your child ~ or take turns to read to each other.
If your child is still puzzled read the word for them.
Do not expect every book to be harder than the one before. Your child may want to read an easy old favourite or sometimes just read with ease. This is perfectly natural ~ reading should be enjoyable and not a chore!
Let your child read alone on some occasions. You can ask about the book later.
Encourage your child to read more challenging books. Read these books together and praise all attempts even if not word perfect.
Encourage your child to concentrate whilst reading. Turn the television off!
Encourage your child to read a range of materials ~ newspapers, comics, shopping lists, dictionaries etc ~ as well as story books.
Ask your child about the books they read. Who are their favourite authors or illustrators? Some children prefer non-fiction.
For children who are becoming competent readers:
As children get older, there's no need to stop enjoying sharing books and reading together. In fact it’s important you don’t stop. Research has shown that children who enjoy reading and spend more time reading for pleasure have better reading and writing skills, a broader vocabulary, and even an increased general knowledge and understanding of other cultures. We appreciate how difficult it is to find time to share a book with your children because there are so many other activities competing for their time especially as they get older.
The following suggestions will help ensure that your child continues to enjoy reading as they get older:
Ensure that your children see you reading. It doesn't matter if it's the newspaper, a cookery book, a romantic novel, a detective mystery, short stories, a computer manual, a magazine ... anything!
Encourage children to join in - ask a child to read out a recipe for you as you cook, or the TV listings when you are watching TV.
Visit the local library together on a regular basis and enjoy spending time choosing new books.
Give, and encourage others to give, books or book tokens as presents.
Encourage children to carry a book at all times so they can read on journeys or in spare moments – you can do this too!
Keep reading together. There are lots of books that both adults and young people can enjoy. Try The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon, the Harry Potter series, or The Life of Pi by Yann Martel. Don’t forget to share classics such as Jungle Book, Secret Garden or Black Beauty.
Read books you can all talk about but make the talk light-hearted, not testing or over-questioning.
Go to libraries or bookshops when authors are visiting. Children and teenagers love meeting their favourite writers - Jacqueline Wilson and Anthony Horowitz always have signing queues that are miles long!
Make sure your home is a reading home - have a family bookshelf and make sure there are shelves in your children's bedrooms as well.
Don't panic if your child reads the same book over and over again - be honest, we've probably all done it!
Encourage your children and their friends to swap books with each other - this will encourage them to talk and think about the books they are reading.
Read aloud to your child.
Remember to give your child lots of other opportunities to read:
Point out signs when you are out and about.
Read recipe books together.
Visit the library.
Read the television listings together.
Leave notes around the house for your child or in their lunch box.
Read instructions for games together.
Read the names of food items in the cupboard.
Read the back of cereal packets.
Leave messages on the fridge. Use magnetic letters.
Read shopping lists together