Beginning Reading Help
There are several great ways to begin teaching your child his alphabet long before he starts school. Playing with the sounds of letters and words and having fun with language will help your child begin learning to read before he ever steps foot into a classroom!
A few of these activities are as follows:
Letter practice: Have your child use his finger to trace each letter of the alphabet while saying the name of the letter and the sound the letter makes. You can do this by using alphabet flashcards, pieces of paper with letters written on them or a sandbox. The combination of sight, touch and speech used in this activity can have a powerful effect on your child’s ability to understand.
The “Alliteration Station” game: Using alliteration (a repeating of the same sound at the beginning of two or more words in a phrase) is another fantastic way to practice letter sounds. Have your child pick his favorite letter and make up a sentence or a phrase using that letter. e.g. My son, Logan, chooses the letter “L” and says “Logan Likes to Laugh out Loud!”
Rhyming games: These are always a hit with the kids! Simply pick a word and ask your child to think of as many words that rhyme as he can. You can also put the rhyming words into a silly song to add to the fun.
Identifying objects: Using alphabet flashcards, blocks or magnetic letters from your refrigerator, choose a letter for your child to work on. Hand your child the letter and have him find an object(s) in the house that begins with that letter. Ask him to say the name of the letter, the sound the letter makes and the name of the object he has chosen.
The purpose of these activities is to help your child understand that letters are symbols for sounds and that putting these sounds together makes words. Be sure to always acknowledge your child when he answers correctly and comprehends something new. Gently correct your child when something is misunderstood. Staying positive will help your child learn and encourage him to explore new things!