Helping Your Child with Reading


Key stage 1 (Years 1&2)

Reading with your child is vital.  Research shows that it's the single most important thing you can do to help your child's education.  It's best to read little and often, so try to put aside some time for it every day. 

Think of ways to make reading fun - you want your child to learn how pleasurable books can be.  If you're both enjoying talking about the content of a particular page, linger over it for as long as you like.

Reading to your child is just as important as listening to them read.  If they are tired they can follow the print with a finger and you can read to them instead.

Tips for helping your child to enjoy books:

  • Encourage your child to pretend to 'read' a book before he or she can read words.
  • Visit the library as often as possible - take out CDs and DVDs as well as books.
  • Schedule a regular time for reading - perhaps when you get home from school or just before bed.
  • Look for books on topics that you know your child is interested in - maybe dragons, insects, cookery or a certain sport.
  • Make sure that children’s books are easily accessible in different rooms around your house.

Helpful website


Key stage 2 (Years 3 - 6)

Parental engagement with learning and support for their child is one of the most significant factors in a child’s development and levels of attainment.  As a parent you have tremendous power to strengthen your child’s confidence, which is vital to learning.

How can I help with reading?   

  • Give cards to accompany reading books where words not known can be recorded and investigated.
  • Read yourself.  Set a good example by reading for pleasure and talking about the reading you do at work and home.
  • It is great to encourage independent reading; older children still enjoy being read to, both at bed times and at other times during the day.
  • Your child does not have to read books alone; newspapers, magazines, comics, TV guides, cookery books and the internet are great too.
  • Discuss reading with your child; ask them if there was anything interesting in what they’ve read recently.
  • Ask lots of questions about the story.  What would you have done if you were…….? Does this book remind you of any thing that has happened to you?  Can you guess what is going to happen next?
  • Visit your local library – it’s free to join.  As well as taking out story books, use visits to the library as a time to find books and CD ROMs about your child’s hobbies and interests.
  • Encourage your child to read to younger family members and friends.
  • Keep in touch with school.  Make sure your child swaps their home reading books regularly at school and try to make a regular time slot to hear them read.  Record your comments in their reading record for the class teacher to see.
  • Make sure your child has a dictionary to check the meanings of new words they encounter in their reading.