Just like learning to walk and talk…
- 1 March, 2016
- Posted by: Katrina Casey
- Category: Reading
It is a magical moment when your child begins to walk. No more ruined clothes, no more paranoia about things left on the floor for your child to hoover as they literally drag themselves around the house, and then again, no more moments of bliss, knowing they can’t be too far away!
Have you ever stopped to reflect on the lead up to this great achievement of walking? I think it plays out similarly in every household. In the beginning, there are props everywhere. Things for our children to grab hold onto, as they navigate the space between the couch and the coffee table. There are walkers to get their little legs pumping. There are the moments when we hold their hands as they stand, and then ever so carefully take our hands away, to have them standing all on their own.
There’s the encouragement. “You can do it!” “Well done! You made it to the couch!”
And then there is the cheering! The clapping and wild shouting, “Yes you did it! You are so clever!” It is such a natural progression, yet one that is supported and nurtured.
Learning to read is a natural progression. Take a moment to listen to young children in the supermarket next time you go. You will see young children asking exasperated parents, “What does this say?” “Can I read the list?” Or they will excitedly point to a sign, and say, “Look mum – it’s on sale!”
To help children learn to read, recreate the same set up, for when your child learnt to walk.
- Set the scene – immerse your child in books
- Provide support – begin with simple readers, and progress to harder ones as confidence grow
- Be there!!! Spend time reading with your child, and getting them to read to you. No parent would leave the task of learning to walk unsupervised.
- Encourage – Believe in your child’s ability and be the back up, when they need help
- Cheer! Celebrate the successes!
Until next time,