Top strategies to support your child learning to read

Reading at home can be such a special time for you and your child to share, but it’s all about picking the ‘right’ moment. This can prove very difficult when presented with tired and emotional children and busy family schedules. It is essential that reading time is purely uninterrupted and quality time. If you have other children too it is lovely to often share books altogether. However, it is also necessary, at times, for your child to have one-on-one reading time with you. From personal Mummy experience I know how tricky this can be to find, but believe me your child will find it incredibly special; he/she will feel valued and develop a sense of importance and confidence when he/she reads or shares books.   I cannot advise on a specific and ultimate time of day as all families and individuals are different, but what I would say is that shorter (5-10 minutes in length) and more frequent reading sessions are far more effective at Pre-school/Reception age than longer, extended reading periods. Furthermore, it is important to pick your times around your child and never attempt to ask them to read if they are overly tired and fractious; there will be absolutely no benefit to either of you.  

Reading during the early years is all about developing positive reading habits and attitudes to carry through life; love books and enjoy reading and children will be set up to access the world! You can help by providing access to a wide range of reading materials around the home (Eg. magazines, poems, comics, recipes, newspapers, signs, audio books, games, shopping lists, information books, story books) for your children to either pick up individually to explore/read by themselves or to have read to them.

Top strategies to support your child with his/her MATHEMATICAL SKILLS.

Maths in the Early Years should never be formal. Developing mathematical language and enjoying numbers, shapes and measuring in a practical context are far more beneficial in terms of cementing seemingly abstract concepts through application to real life scenarios.   Here are just a few ideas of how to support your child’s mathematical development at home, but please contact me for more individual and extensive ideas:

Top strategies to support your child with his/her WRITING DEVELOPMENT

There is so much I could write here, but I’ll attempt to keep it short and sweet! There are many essential elements to learning to write. It is important to realise that children will naturally develop and progress at varying paces at this young age so try to avoid comparisons!

Mark-making and ascribing meaning to marks

I have often heard parents saying their children ‘just scribble’ when they write. However, this is the mark-making stage and is critical to writing development, so it should be encouraged! During Reception if children are at this stage it is helpful to call their marks ‘writing’ and ask them what their writing is about.   This will boost their confidence and motivate them to write more often and for varying purposes.

What can you do to help your child in his first year at school?

Phew! So, your child’s first day at school has come and gone. One milestone event completed! You are both beginning to get into a pattern and a routine during the school week. It is early days but your child appears to be settling into school life well. Fantastic news! You should feel assured.

The next big question you will no doubt be contemplating now is ’How can I support my child throughout his first year in school?’

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