Reading success involves three major areas:
1. Fluency - "Reading with speed, accuracy, and proper expression without conscious attention on the reader's part" (Caldwell & Leslie, 2005).
2. Vocabulary - Recognizing and attaching meaning to a word.
3. Comprehension - Understanding the story or information.
“Students who are exposed to normal amounts of text may learn from 1,000 to 5,000 new words each year through reading alone" (Nagy and Herman, 1984).
What should your child read at home?
This year we continue with Reading Workshop! Your child should read his/her INDEPENDENT READING BOOK every night (including weekends and over holiday breaks) for a minimum of 20 minutes. Independent reading books may be chosen from the classroom, school, public, or home library, but they should be at or around your child's reading level. Books chosen outside Jefferson School can be brought to me -- I will be happy to try and help determine the book's level.
Struggling through a difficult book does not make a good reader and may do more harm than good! If your child encounters difficulty with five or more words on a page, it is a clear signal that the book should be abandoned.
Reading at home should be an enjoyable experience, not a chore. The more children enjoy books, the more they will want to read. They will build reading, comprehension, and vocabulary skills without even knowing it! Visit the Hawthorne library often! It has one of the best selections of children's books around, and it's free!
What can you do at home?
TALK to your child and READ with them!!! Starting a parent / child "book club" is a great way to spend time together and make reading fun.
- They can read aloud to you.
- You can read aloud to them.
- They can read silently and independently.
- Talk about the story. Ask your child about what happened, their favorite part, their favorite characters, etc.
- Note: If you are not able to read with your child in English, read in the language you are familiar with.
Reading for Fun
IMPORTANT!!! It is okay for children to read "easy" books, picture books, comic books, old favorites, etc., for fun! Easy books help children build confidence, fluency, word recognition skills, comprehension, and make the reading process much more enjoyable. However, they should also be reading a level appropriate book.
Reading and Vocabulary Websites
Kids love computers! Take advantage of the websites below -- the links will take you directly to fun and educational reading related games and activities.
http://www.readingrockets.org This site provides information for parents, including tips about reading. It also contains book reviews and videotaped interviews with popular children's authors.
http://reading.org/InformationFor/Parents.aspx and http://www.readwritethink.org/parent-afterschool-resources/ These two sites are provided by the International Reading Association. There is a lot of information here for readers at all levels.
http://childrenslibrary.org This site contains books that can be read on line in their entirety. Books are listed by age group and can be read in English as well as other languages if you choose. This site contains book reviews, trivia, author info, and more.
http://www.bookadventure.com Helps kids choose books to read and allows them to create and maintain their own book lists. Choose “Kids Zone”, then search for books at your child’s interest and reading level.
http://www.kidsreads.com This site contains info, book reviews, author interviews, games, and trivia for favorite books.
http://www.discoveryeducation.com/students/index.cfm?campaign=flyout_students You'll find many free student resources in all subject areas.
http://www.vocabulary.co.il/ This site contains games like Hangman, word searches, crosswords, matching, and jumbles that can be done on line or printed out.
http://vocabulary.com This site contains vocabulary activities that can be quite challenging.