What do I say to my child when they are reading?
When you are reading with your child at home it can be difficult to know what to say to them when they read something wrong or come to a word they don’t know. To start off, it is okay that they don’t get every word correct. They are just starting! Don’t nit pick over every mispronounced word or mistake. Here are some things you can say to your child to help them get started.
Have them point to the words as they read. This is a strategy that eventually, they will grow out of, but in the beginning is important. I want them to develop a “concept of word”- which is connecting the word they are saying with a particular word on the page. You may have to remind them to do this.
Here are some things to do if you child comes to a word they don’t know:
- First, have them check to see if it a word that they should know (is it on one of their reading lists?) Give them enough wait time to try to figure it out.
- Have the student look at the picture to determine the meaning of the unknown word.
- Have them look at the first letter in the word they are trying to figure out. Ask, “What is the first letter? And what sound does it make?” Continue to do this with more letters in the word. Help them break apart the words into sounds.
If the word is beyond your child’s reading ability, simply read the word for them.