Tips for Teaching Reading Comprehension to your Kids

Teaching reading comprehension is critical to ensure your kids are successful readers. Children have to learn more than just recognizing letters, sounds and words. They need to associate meaning to those letters, sounds and words.

The bigger picture needs to be in the back of your mind, and keeping them interested in reading is vital.

Reading motivation...

Teaching Reading...

The right reading comprehension strategies can be the key to instilling a love of reading in your child. Without these strategies, it's like reading a foreign language; they can say the words, but have no idea how to interpret them.

As your children develop and grow you should see their comprehension improve. You can measure their understanding by the questions they ask and the comments they make.

While preschool and kindergarten kids are primarily learning how to decode our language and to recognize letters and words, first graders are becoming real readers.

By the end of first grade, kids should be able to talk about the books they’re reading and know how to summarize the main ideas. They should understand more and more vocabulary words and be able to associate what they’re reading with the world around them. They are developing interests and should be communicating what kinds of books they are interested in.

10 Basic Teaching Reading Comprehension Tips:

  1. Help your child create mental images when they read. Show them how to use their senses and get emotionally involved with the story they’re reading. Kids who are good at visualizing can tell you the details of the story, make predictions about what’s coming up in the story, and are eager to read more of the story – even if they’ve already read it dozens of times.

  2. Ask lots of questions during the story because this helps your child process what they’ve read and helps strengthen their understanding. Encourage your child to ask questions. If they don’t, ask THEM if they have any questions.

  3. Show your kids how to make inferences while they’re reading.

  4. Teach them how to figure out the most important idea or theme of the book.

  5. Take a little time EVERY day to read to your child; just 15 or 20 minutes is enough time.

  6. Talk about what you’re reading and discuss new words or ideas.

  7. Ask them to write a report or draw a picture about what they've just read.

  8. Create an inviting nurturing reading environment.

  9. Don’t make reading just about worksheets and quizzes. Practice sheets for spelling and vocabulary serves a purpose, but it won’t develop your child’s love of learning. Remember, the goal is to promote a love of reading.

  10. Find a book that your child will fall in love with. If one doesn’t work, try another one.

Important Teaching Reading Comprehension Links:

Learn specific reading comprehension strategies.

You can check out some of our suggestions for the best books for children.

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