10 Smart Strategies to Boost your Child's Fluency in Reading
Early years are crucial for developing children's fluency in reading. In addition to being able to read quickly and accurately, they must also be able to understand what they read. Those who are fluent readers are more confident and self-assured when handling text. Academically, they tend to perform better as well.
Reading fluency develops at different rates for different children. There are those who stumble over a few words while learning, while there are those who zoom right along. Despite this, all children can benefit from extra reading fluency help. In order for children to develop fluency in reading, parents can play a key role by giving them access to audiobooks or doing silent reading time with them.
Here are ten smart strategies that parents can use to help their children boost their fluency in reading:
Read aloud together every day
This is one of the best ways to help kids develop fluency in reading. When children hear fluent readers, they start to replicate that fluency themselves. This strategy also helps them easily parse out text's meaning and understand new words as they encounter them. By listening to you read and hearing the rhythm of words, children learn to focus on meaning together with fluency or pronunciation. Additionally, regular exposure to different books and stories helps children to build their vocabulary and understand the structure of written language.
Give them audiobooks
If your child is a struggling reader, don't hesitate to give them access to audiobooks. There's no shame in using this tool to help their fluency and comprehension skills. In fact, many experts recommend that reluctant readers or those with reading difficulties listen to audiobooks as they follow along with the text. This way, they can hear how words are pronounced and get a better sense of the fluency and rhythm of language. Additionally, they can take their time following along with the story, pausing as needed to process what they've read.
Encourage silent reading time
One of the best ways for children to become more fluent readers is simply by giving them lots of opportunities to practice. Make sure that plenty of books are available for them to read at their own pace, and encourage them to spend some time each day reading silently. This will help them to increase their fluency as they become more comfortable with the mechanics of reading. Additionally, it's important to let kids choose books they're interested in to motivate them to read.
Help them with word decoding skills
If your child has difficulty sounding out words, give them some extra help with decoding skills. There are a number of ways you can do this, including working on phonemic awareness or using flashcards with common words. You can also help them by breaking down words into smaller chunks and having them focus on one sound at a time. Additionally, it can be helpful to provide them with a list of words they can practice reading fluently.
Work on fluency and comprehension together
When you're reading aloud with your child, take some time to talk about the book afterwards. Ask them questions about the story and help them to make connections between what they've read and their own life experiences. This will not only help to improve their comprehension skills, but it will also give them more opportunities to practice reading fluently. You can also ask them to retell the story in their own words or have them act out scenes from the book.
Use technology to your advantage
There are several great apps and websites that can help kids to improve their fluency skills. Look for games and activities focusing on fluency, phonemic awareness, and comprehension. Many of these apps also allow you to track your child's progress over time to see how they're improving. Additionally, there are a number of e-books that have been specifically designed to help kids improve their fluency.
Model fluent reading yourself
Whenever your child sees you reading, take the opportunity to model fluent reading for them. This includes reading aloud with expression and paying attention to the rhythm of the words. Additionally, it's important to ensure that you're pronouncing words correctly and taking care to enunciate clearly. This will give your child an excellent model to follow as they learn to read fluently themselves.
Have them read aloud to you
One of the best ways to help your child improve their fluency is to have them read aloud to you regularly. This gives them some much-needed practice reading aloud and allows you to provide feedback and guidance. Additionally, it's a great opportunity for you to model fluent reading for them. Make sure that they're taking their time and reading with expression to get a feel for the rhythm of the words.
Encourage expressive reading
When your child is reading aloud, encourage them to use different voices for different characters and to add expression to their reading. This will help them to understand the story better and to practice reading fluently. Additionally, it's a great opportunity for you to model expressive reading for them.
Make it fun!
Try incorporating some fun games and activities into reading time to help keep your child engaged. For example, you could create a "reading scavenger hunt" where your child has to find specific words or phrases while they're reading. Or make up a game where you take turns reading paragraphs aloud and see who can do it the fastest without making any mistakes. Just use your imagination and have fun!
By focusing on fluency in reading and providing targeted support through regular practice, you can help kids become strong, confident readers who enjoy exploring the wide world of literature!
At Mrs. Myers' Learning Lab, we specialize in fun, interactive classes for developing readers. Our engaging process leads to students gaining self-confidence, interpersonal skills, and a love for learning that extends far beyond the classroom.
Every teacher on our team is certified in our dynamic learning methods, which encompass a multi-sensory, proven approach that focuses on learning through sight, sounds, and physical interaction. We call this combination of best practices the "Myers' Method" (patent-pending). Visit us to learn more!