We cannot access, analyze, collect, and/or utilize information without reading.
A good reader is a better judge of character and a thoughtful critique.
Reading improves memory skills and is important for graceful brain development.
It improves vocabulary, communication skills and influences overall personality of a person.
Above all: It is an important segment for Academic Achievement.
Every child is unique and so is each teacher and parent. When we serve as facilitators in learning for our students and children we tend to have a keen sense of what works for each individual. Here are a few tips and tricks to help you improve reading skills for a variety of students at different levels.
Bedtime Reading Time: Encourage the parents of your students to embrace bedtime stories – they aren’t just for toddlers! For younger kids and very beginning readers, reading aloud is great -it enhances their vocabulary and comprehension skills. If a child is in elementary school or their teens, ask the child to read aloud while listening to the story, or set aside a period of time before bed when they read on their own without interruption.
Adult Influence: Kids learn in part by observing what adults do. Showing our students and children that we read for pleasure is important. This is a great case of leading by example. Set aside a time for students to show their peers what they’re reading for pleasure.
A Dedicated Space: If possible, dedicate a separate space as a reading area in your classroom, and encourage parents to do the same at home. Encourage visiting the school or nearby public library or reward them for spending time there voluntarily. Appreciate the child whenever they use the library to read or research. Encourage the child to be the best of friends with books and inform him of the benefits of being an avid reader.
Variety: E-book readers for smartphone or tablet can be useful. Provide audio books to younger readers. Encourage them to read from good websites. For younger kids, provide printouts of reading material. This will keep them in tune with modern technology and will provide wider reading scope.
Gamification: Words and reading can be a lot more fun when the student reads real world materials. Make quizzes using real life material (signs around the school?), help them make their own puzzles, play rhyming words, and various other word games available on websites, etc.
Group Work: Create a reading group, and design a contest around a particular extra-curricular/pleasure book. Award the one who wins this reading competition. Include speed-reading with the contextual reference, word games, and interpretation appropriate for the age group. You can choose to award extra credit or another type of award for participation.
Problems?: Seek guidance from school as well as from professionals. We can get help from online resources as well as from tutors, other teachers, administrators, and reading specialists.
Integrate Writing: Make kids write their own journal, diary, or blog. Writing will inform reading, and vice versa.
Keep motivating and influencing the child in a positive manner. Never miss an opportunity to praise good work. It is one habit that will blossom to reap many awesome benefits and is totally worth the effort.