My little girl is at preschool and is obsessed with learning to read and write. I will be honest I am a teacher and give me a group of 32 stroppy teens and I can get them to pass a GCSE but little ones? I'm not so good. I don't really know what I'm doing unless what I'm doing is teaching essay skills.
Through a bit of trial and error I have developed a few ways to help my little one with her phonics at home. As a teacher I am aware that homework is super important. It consolidates learning and really aids children when it comes to important revision time in their GCSEs. So here are some tips to help your child on their way to reading their own bedtime story!
1) Sit down together when you have time to dedicate to help your child learn
My girl and I find that the best time to do homework or a bit of extra learning is when we have a bit of peace and quiet. And this generally happens? When her crazy little bro is far away. We turn off the tele or tablet and focus on the task at hand.
2) Invest in some books aimed at preschoolers
There are lots of books on the market for our little ones and some of them are pricier than others. The Works sent me a selection of some aimed at pre-schoolers. They are reasonably priced and that way if they do get scribbled on or a bit messy it's not too bad. They also provide a guide for you at the sort of tasks they should be doing so you're less confused yourself.
3) Keep calm and start with the basics
Reading and writing seems like the easiest thing in the world. But for our little ones it can sometimes be a bit overwhelming. Let the books lead you in how to teach short and simple words. Maybe ask the pre-school teachers for any extra worksheets they may have. Ours issued out a phonics CD so you can remind your tot what they have been learning in the classroom.
4) Rewards work!
Firstly? Rewards are not bribes. You need to think of it as positive praise. Children love to take pride in their success and around the age of four developmentally they start to begin to become competitive and their self value is in how others see them. So if you get yourself some reward stickers and perhaps a little prize after they get ten or so it may help them to focus and finish the little mini tasks you set them that little bit quicker! The above stickers are again from The Works as is the Minnie Pencil case which is the treat in return for all her hard work.
5) Have fun
Remember how fab it was watching our children walk. Or starting to talk. How proud we were? Well this is the same! The way they start reading and writing will set them up for life. Making it fun and encouraging wherever you can really will help them when they hit big school (oh the many sobs) in September.
Collaboration for The Works.