Reading for Children~ Parental Involvement in Early Literacy

Hello, how are you doing? I hope you are well and keeping safe. This post is for parents with very young children who are just learning to be literate and I write about the approach that works for me as a mom of two children. I title it parental involvement in early literacy.

In 2013, I started my Honours program in Applied English Language Studies and one of the courses I had to study was Early Literacy because I studied on the Education campus. We had to study different forms of literacy and we were asked to do a mini research on a chosen topic. At that time, I was not even married yet and also did not have a child yet but I had so many experiences with parents and their children. I had observed different ways parent chose to be involved in their child’s education. Some were really involved and some were not really involved. As a result of that, a topic that readily came to mind was Parental Involvement in Early Literacy. I did a research find out if it helps a child learn how to read better when their parent is/are involved. It was a case study and it turned out to there was a positive outcome when a parent contributed to the learning development of their child.

Early literacy is how a child is introduced to literacy- reading and writing. It has to do with how parents engage in activities to enhance academic performance. This was proved to have a significant effect on a childs overall performance. I observed a single mother and her 5 year old son at that time. I remember that I used the ORIM (Nutbrown, 2011) checklist as a guide during my observation with them. I would like to share the checklist which I find still relevant today and hope that it will work for someone reading this : )

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O- Opportunities

Opportunities are created for a child when the parents buy books to read and make time available to teach the child how to read. These days, some parents no longer buy traditional books as such, and rather have the children read on tabs and laptops. In this case, books should be downloaded and effort should be made to show the child how to read. Words should also be made available all around the house (or their room)- sight words and high frequency words. This will help with phonological awareness for the child. I did this with my son and currently using the same approach for my daughter who just turned two and I can say that it works. My son was able to read from age three. He is now almost six years old and reads very well, I am actually impressed by his reading skills! I find creating opportunities for them to learn to read is still relevant.

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Here, recognition is when the parent recognises the childs reading development and achievement by praising them. The parent can do this through a reward system where they receive stickers or high fives, or even a cookie for their achievement. It is up to the parent to decide what reward will work for their child and when to give such a reward. My son loves stickers, there are stickers all over the door of his room and wardrobes. He does not really have a sweet tooth so high fives and stickers work better for him than a cookie or chocolate, for example.

I- Interaction

When a parent interacts with a child, it gives the child a chance to express themselves and use more words. For instance, when a parent asks a child to tell them a story, it gives the child an opportunity to use new words s/he heard and it gives the parent an opportunity to correct the child if the word is used in a wrong context. The parent may also let the child take part in writing the shopping list. My son helps in writing our shopping list and this gives him a chance to sneak in some extra items at times : )

M- Model

The last one is when a parent models how to read to the child. This helps with the right pronunciation. I remember when my son saw a word and asked me if it was grove or groove. He had an idea but was not sure of the right pronunciation. It gave me a chance to model it to him. A parent can also have days where they read out to the child, during bed time stories for example.

I find this checklist is still relevant several years after and I find it useful in introducing my children to reading, especially. This in addition to other tips can help teach or show a child how to read without pressure. Have you read about this checklist before today? Is it helpful for you? Are there other guidelines you know about? Please leave a comment below. I would like to read from you. Also, if you find this helpful, please like and share. Also, feel free follow my blog to read more about education, parenting and lifestyle. Thank you for stopping by. Bye for now👋

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