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Updated: Apr 23, 2021



“Reading aloud presents books as sources of pleasant, valuable, and exciting experiences. Children who value books are motivated to read on their own.” Derry Koralek

Listening to an adult model fluent reading increases students' own fluency and comprehension skills (Trelease, 2001), as well as, expanding their vocabulary, background knowledge, sense of story, awareness of genre and text structure, and comprehension of the texts read (Wu & Samuels, 2004).

Did you know that reading is not just about “calling” words and turning pages? It’s so much more!

Think about this:

Re- read the book

E ngage and enjoy

A sk questions

D o more

Re-read a book several times. Try doing this at least three times. This reinforces and strengthens vocabulary and comprehension. Each time you re-read a book, change the focus of your conversation.

When re-reading fiction books:

  • Talk about what is happening in the story.

  • Help children to predict what might happen next.

  • Discuss the characters and their motives.

  • Examine how the illustrations support comprehension.

When re-reading non-fiction books:

  • Talk about what the author wants to teach the reader.

  • Allow children to ponder how they will use the new knowledge.

  • Notice text structure like headings, sub-headings and graphics.

  • Help children to make comparisons to other books on the subject.

Engage and enjoy with your child:

  • Read with enthusiasm.

  • Use expressive voice tones.

  • Find a comfortable spot to cuddle and read.

  • Just have fun reading the book.

Ask questions:

As you read fiction books, ask questions like “What color was the house?”

Then go deeper and ask:

  • “Why do you think the illustrator used that color?”

  • “What did the color of the house add to mood of the story?”

  • “How did the color of the house make you feel?”

  • “Would you use another color? Why or Why not?

When you read non-fiction books, ask questions such as:

  • “What does the author want you to learn?”

  • “How will you use what you are learning in your every-day life?

  • “How can you use what you learned to help others?”

  • “What do the graphics and notes in the margin mean?”

These types of questions strengthen critical thinking skills and nurture the ability to solve problems. You want your child to do more than just pronounce the words without understanding the meaning of the text.

Be patient and listen to your children’s answers. Help them discover their own voice.

I encourage you to keep reading and make connections to real-life activities.

For example:

  • If you are reading about sea creatures, visit the aquarium.

  • If you are reading about cars, take your child with you the next time you have your car serviced.

  • If you are reading about stars, visit a planetarium.

  • If you are reading about trees, visit a park.

These experiences:

  • Bring books to life

  • Make reading exciting

  • Boost children’s ability to learn

  • Help children make connections between themselves and the world

Don’t just read to your children. Read with them. Your efforts can pave the way to success in life.

Learn more about the Ten Steps to Reading Success – Progressive Parents Promoting Workshop. Sign up for the next virtual online workshop.

Let’s work together to cultivate competent, confident readers.

Next month, more on the Ten Steps.

I wish you love, laughter and literacy!

KP Carter

The Literacy Whisperer

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