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May 31, 2009

Posted by Nora in Uncategorized.

Tip #3:  Establish a Family Reading Time!

We teach our children that in order to be good at something, we need to practice!  Well, this belief holds true for reading…especially at the earliest stages.  Beginning readers need to read often.  They require lots of experiences with many kinds of books, but most of all they need “time” to read.  Establishing a time for reading simply means setting aside a short time to read each and every day.  Ideally, it’s a time where the whole family reads…independently.  By doing this, you will show your child that you value reading enough to spend precious time doing it all together

 We all have very busy schedules, but carving out a short time each day is really manageable and fun!  What’s more, by reading in front of your children, you will be an excellent model for them!  It’s amazing how much they will aspire to read after watching you as well as older siblings.  I recommend starting “small”!  In my family, we started reading together for just five minutes a day.  The first day, my boys didn’t want to stop.  (Of course, this is what we want to happen!!)  But, starting “small” will allow your beginning reader to enjoy the experience and look forward to the next day.  Then, over time, you can gradually increase your family reading time – even by a minute or two – depending on your individual family.  

 Older children will probably still have other independent reading time.  The goal of this “established family reading time” is for younger, beginning readers to grow independent and develop a love of reading.  Even if they are just looking at the pictures or re-reading a favorite book, this sustained reading time will strengthen both their fluency and their confidence.  Best of all, it will provide your family with time each day to do something “together”!


A few ideas to do after your “family reading time”:

1.  Have each family member share a little bit about what they read that day!

2.  Have a question and answer session where each person in the family asks another    person a question about their book.

3.  Once a week, have a special family snack after your reading time.



1. ars - June 7, 2009

Thanks for all of the terrific ideas for readers of all ages. I’m finding them helpful for the “parent” me and the “teacher” me! I really love reading about the specific things you’ve done with your own kids too. Keep the ideas coming!

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