On Monday, I had the pleasure of attending the 5th Annual Research to Practice Symposium: Reading Proficiency: Differences That Matter. It was hosted by Academy in Manayunk. It was sponsored by Understood.org and Wilson Language Training. The panel of speakers were experts in the field of reading and education. It was a day packed with information regarding reading and the brain. There was so much information presented that MY brain was on overload.
One of the statistics that resonated with me profoundly was the fact that, “66% of US fourth grade students are NOT reading at grade level.” This is a sad but true statistic, and it hasn’t changed much over the years. One of the reasons why I started my company almost 13 years ago was because I saw first hand the reading crisis within our schools. I worked with many students that were not on grade level by the 4th grade. It was this reason why I wanted to create a company to help support the struggling readers in our community. It is why today I continue to follow our mission to help students become successful learners and to empower parents to help support their children at home.
There is no doubt that students who struggle with reading benefit from 1-1 tutoring . They also benefit from an expert in reading to focus on the areas of need and help support their learning through explicit reading instruction. However, parents also play a HUGE role in supporting their child’s reading success at home. There are many ways that parents can encourage literacy at home and foster reading on a daily basis. It is my hope that these tips will help empower parents to create a literacy rich home. Together we can help our students reach reading success.
5 Ways to Foster Literacy Development at Home:
Read in Front of Your Children:
This is easy. Simple. Read in front of your children. Read for pleasure. Showing them that you read for pleasure is a easy way to promote literacy in your home.
Use Flashcards to Build Sight Word and Vocabulary Development:
Make literacy fun for your child. Build their sight word and vocabulary development through games. Put the words on the flashcards and play games such as bingo, memory and go fish to help reinforce reading. This can be done for all ages.
Incorporate Websites that Promote Literacy:
There are many websites that are great resources to promote reading and writing. Here are a few of my favorite. They are great resources for parents and teachers too: Readworks.org , Spellingcity.com, Tweentribune.com and Starfall.com
Encourage Time for Writing:
Give your child opportunities for writing. Ask them to write a letter to you. I do this activity with my 3 children. We journal to each other. At the end of our day, we write notes to each other in a journal that is specifically for them. We write about what is important to us or we just write silly things. It is a great way to bond with your child all while promoting literacy and most importantly your child has a treasured gift that will last a lifetime!
Create a Book vs. Movie Family Activity:
As a family, watch a movie that was based on a book that you have all read. This is both fun and educational. This is a great way to promote literacy while challenging your child to think critically on how the movie and book presented the same information. What a way to encourage literacy and discussion!
Together we can help cultivate the love of reading and promote literacy to our children.
Do you have other ways to help promote literacy in the home? Share your ideas with us.
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