Friday, June 18, 2010

Reading Tip #8: Reading Comprehension

Your child may love reading, but does he/she have the comprehension skills to understand the context of the book/story? Although the majority of children who love reading have higher comprehension skills, it is still vital that you train your child in refining these skills. Talk to your child about the book he/she is reading or is just done reading. Ask what the book is about, who their favorite characters are and why, and what was their favorite and least favorite part of the book. Doing so consistently will ensure your child reads for the details instead of simply skimming through the book. In addition, you can have your child work on some comprehension exercises. The following links are some free comprehension exercises (for different age groups) you can print out for your child to practice on:

3.  http://www.pearsonlongman.com/ae/marketing/sfesl/practicereading.html
4.  http://www.usingenglish.com/comprehension/ (6th grade through 9th grade, depending on our child's skill level.)
5.  http://www.superteacherworksheets.com/1st-comprehension.html

That being said, it is alright for your child to try and challenge him/herself to read a higher level book. They may not understand it completely at first, but they are slowly harnessing their comprehension skills in attempting to read a more difficult book. Don't discourage your kids if they want to try a harder read. Encourage them. Buy them a dictionary so that they may look up difficult words. If you have read that book before, talk to them after they have finish each chapter and try and explain the chapter's story and key points to them if they don't quite understand it. Doing so will encourage them to further their reading skills and get them excited about reading. If you will like to take it a step further, have them highlight the new words they have learnt. Pick about ten of those words and have them write a silly story using those words. The result will be a child better equipped in their vocabulary skills and the beginning of a fun creative writing process!

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