Helping your child become a reader

Hopefully you hear a lot about the importance of your child becoming a good reader. It is because reading makes such a difference in your child’s ability to succeed in school and in life. Making reading a habit is something that begins early and pays off throughout life.


As a parent or grandparent or even a neighbor, you can do a great deal to help a child become a reader. The single most important thing you can do is to read to your child.


Read every day. Read twice a day. Read books yourself as well as to him. Read signs. Your child will love the words, the pictures and the special time alone with you.


Have books around.


Let him read the books put out in restaurants and waiting rooms by the Clallam County Literacy Council.

Let your child see you read and that you value reading.


Take him to the library regularly.


Take him to the library or bookstore or to grandmother’s house or any place that has a reading time.


Swap books with fri-ends or go to garage sales and buy some wonderful used books.


Be excited as he learns to recognize the words.


Take turns in reading.


Let him tell you the story as he reads the pictures or learns to memorize the story.


Reread books that he knows. Talk about the stories.


Ask him questions like “What is the horse doing?” or “How do you think the little boy feels?”


Make reading a bed-time story a regular tradition.


Make reading a habit and you are helping make success a habit.


Cynthia Martin is the founder of the First Teacher program and now director of Parenting Matters Foundation. The foundation publishes newsletters for parents, caregivers, and grandparents. Reach Martin at or at 681-2250.


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