If the local experts at Catholic Education Services – Cairns Diocese could give one piece of advice to parents it would be this: give your children the gift of time by reading with them at home.
At any age and skill level. Read. Read. And read to them some more.
The Cairns Diocese team is promoting the benefits of literacy and its equally important educational ‘cousin’ numeracy in a new video series. In particular, the videos highlight the key role parents play in their child’s learning.
Featuring tips and insights from Numeracy and Literacy Coaches Michelle King and Gloria West, the videos are a practical guide to help parents regardless of their child's age and reading level.
“Let’s face it, kids won’t remember the tablet or the toy you bought them for Christmas when they were younger,” Ms King said. “But they will remember the precious time you spent with them cuddled up together reading a book.”
Watch the video series: Facebook.com/catholiceducationdiocesecairns
“One of the greatest gifts a parent can give to their child is the gift of time. Time spent cuddled up on the couch sharing a book talking about the characters, looking at the fun moments and the sad moments, really enjoying a book together. This creates a special bond with your child. Reading aloud to children helps them learn things like the direction of print, left to right and top to bottom, how groups of letters form words and words form sentences, and how pictures provide information. But most importantly how reading provides meaning.”
“Reading should be fun. Help your child to choose books they really enjoy reading. We want to make life-long readers out of children. Talk about characters from books that you enjoyed reading. Remember though it’s not a test. We want children to enjoy reading. So, don’t worry if your child has a favourite book they want you to read over and over again. This is actually a really good thing because it helps them to build fluency and embeds vocabulary.”