The magic moment: when the squiggles on the page become letters, words, stories!
The magic moment: when the squiggles on the page become letters, words, stories!

Is your child just starting to read? Children at this stage are known as "emerging readers" and every child emerges at a different pace. Here are a few tips to help you encourage your child and keep them motivated as they transition from pre-readers to independent readers:

- Be patient. Learning to read successfully is comprised of two major skills working together: decoding and comprehension. Simply put, these skills are the ability to recognize familiar words (and sound out unfamiliar ones) and the knowledge of what those words mean. It's a process.   

- Read together often. Read to your child and let your child read to you.

- Talk about what you read. Talk about new words. Explain unfamilar vocabulary and phrases.

- Make your house a print-rich environment. Have books all over- the kitchen, the bedroom, even the bathroom (well, perhaps not library books!)  You can also listen to audio books while driving around town.

- Read books that your child enjoys- even if they are gross, silly, or not to your preference. The best way to help a new reader become a lifelong reader is by taping into their interests. Don't worry, they hopefully won't find bodily functions this hilarious forever....