Tips for Reading Success
- Talk to your child! Ask your child about their day. What did you do in school today? What book did the teacher read to you? What was your favorite part? What did you do at recess today? Did you meet any new friends today?
- Connect the stories you read to real life! If you are reading a book about a character that is learning how to ride his bike without training wheels connect to the time your child learned how to do this for the first time.
- Sing songs and teach your child nursery rhymes! Nursery rhymes seem to have lost their luster over the years. Don't underestimate their value, they are important to a child's development. “Experts in literacy and child development have discovered that if children know eight nursery rhymes by heart by the time they’re four years old, they’re usually among the best readers by the time they’re eight.” [Fox, M. (2001). Reading Magic. San Diego, CA: Harcourt.]
- Read to your child and have your child read to you! Read every night if you can. Reading the same book over and over again is good for your child (even if you think, "Oh no, not again!").
- Read more than just books! We are reading all the time! Children are reading even before they realize they are doing it. Read road signs, restaurant names, cereal boxes, etc.
- Talk about letters and sounds! You can turn this into a fun game while in the car, waiting in the doctor's office, or sitting by the pool. You can say, "I am thinking of a letter that starts with /sss/." You can play I Spy: "I Spy with my little eye something that starts with the letter Rr."
Tips for Math Success
- Count with your child! You can insert counting into almost any daily activity. You can count the number of steps it takes to get from your doorstep to the mailbox. You can count how many red cars you see while driving to the park. You might ask your child to count how many food items are in your shopping cart. The list goes on and on.
- Recognize the size and shape of objects around you! Add a little fun and go on a scavenger hunt to find objects that are shaped like a circle, square, rectangle, etc. Ask your child to find something in the back yard that is bigger than a leaf or shorter than the dog.
- Let your child cook with you! Cooking involves counting, measuring, estimating, etc. Children love to help and they get the added bonus of helping to lick the bowl!
- Get up and move! Children love to move, they need to move, so why not make it educational too!? Play hopscotch. Change the numbers on the hopscotch grid and have them read the numbers when they land on them. When they land on a number ask them what number comes next. Recognize patterns by giving them a sequence to follow. For example: clap, clap, stomp, stomp. Use sidewalk chalk to make a number line or a ten frame. Use rocks, leaves, acorns to solve an addition problem.
- Play games! Everyone loves to play card games and board games. Here are a few suggestions: Uno, Connect 4, Candyland, Hi-Ho Cherry-O, Memory, Sequence for Kids, Sorry, Chutes and Ladders, etc. The list goes on and on.