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Parents as Reading Partners

Last updated 5 years ago

Development of strong reading skills is an essential part of your child's success in school and in life. In addition to acting as a reading role model for your kids, try forming a reading partnership. You can do this in a variety of ways.

A partnership of two
Set aside a reading period - at least 15 minutes each day - in which you and your child read together. Read aloud to younger children and have older children read aloud to you. Find two copies of the same book to read at the same time. Come together to share your impressions of the story.

Talk about it
To start a conversation about the book you are reading, try asking questions that allow your child to stay in the fictional or emotional "world" of the book:

  • Who was your favorite character in this chapter?
  • Why do you think the character decided to open the secret door?
  • What would have happened if the character hadn't come to the house?

Join a book group
Book discussion groups have long been a popular way for people to meet socially and share ideas. Today, they are more popular than ever. But book clubs aren't limited to adults anymore. You and your children can join a book club in your neighborhood library or form your own.

Children's Literature Specialist Anna Healy explains that parent-child book clubs provide "a time for parents and children to come together and share their enthusiasm for a book without the pressure of being ridiculed or the worry of receiving a grade."

Book groups give children a chance to express their feelings about reading and talk about issues that might be hard to discuss in other ways. Especially important benefits of book groups are that "children can be motivated to read if they are given the opportunity to share books with peers. When they have a discussion their enthusiasm for reading grows and their comprehension improves."

Contact the Literacy and Language Center at (415) 242-1205 to find out more about how we can help your child succeed.

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