Both my daughters started reading on their own at the age of 5. I never rushed them and just waited till they were ready. In fact, I was really surprised when I learned that they can already read long sentences. They would ask me to read with them and capture them on video so we can send it to their Dada who works abroad.
Here are the girls’ videos which I managed to record, both at 5 years old:
If you feel that your child is facing a difficulty in reading, or just simply is not showing his/her interest, you may want to try these effective tips:
1. Read Out Loud. While it can be annoying to others, I noticed that for every child, reading out loud is the most effective way not only in improving one’s reading ability. It also helps improve one’s grammar and accent as you can actually spot your own mistakes quickly. Besides, reading out loud helps us remember things. It may not work for everyone but I am sure it will to the majority.
2. Focus on what and how they want to read. If you think they like to read about princesses or superheroes, let them. If you feel that by reading commercial ads catches more of their attention, then be it. My youngest’s reading skill was developed and actually progressed when she started chatting with her Dada online, of course, with supervision. I noticed that she gets too excited to read what her Dada would respond, so I let and allowed her whenever possible.
3. Sounds. Sounds are the building blocks of words and the most fundamental parts of learning to read, and these were first taught in school. The sounds of a, b, c, th, sh, and so on. Whenever my kids find it difficult to read an unfamiliar word, I remind them of the sound and it helps big time.
4. Write and Read. Let them write simple words, and make them read them randomly. I bought them a chalkboard and a whiteboard during that time which made our activities easier, convenient, and fun!
5. Make it fun with signboards. Whenever we are on the road, I make them read every signboard that we see. It also makes each travel a fun time!
Image source here.