Does your child love reading?
We all want the answer to be yes. So how can we achieve confident, enthusiastic readers? Here are a few ideas to help build confidence in reading:
Try to read little and often.
Talk about the pictures.
Whilst reading, if your child stumbles on a word, then remind them to sound the word using their phonics knowledge. (Mr Thorne Does Phonics on YouTube is worth having a look at.) Reading the whole sentence again, once they are confident with the word, means they may not lose the understanding.
Read a variety of subject matter: stories, factual books, children’s newspapers, magazines, leaflets, in fact anything with words that interests them and is suitable.
Discussion and questioning is important to help engage and embed understanding. Here are some ideas:
Model reading to them, so enjoy a book together.
This term our main focus is sentences that make sense and are accurately punctuated. We play a variety of games to support confidence with writing and spelling, some of which are below.
In class we always encourage the children to check their own work. We use visual success criteria and lots of modeled sentences that the children can use and compare to their own work. When doing this we deliberately focus on only one or two goals i.e. checking all the full full stops rather than making everything perfect. This can promote a love of writing and resilience towards extended writing.
To write well, it is important that the children understand what goes into a sentence and how it is ordered. The video below has a game we play that develops language as well as a familiarity of word order.
We use the headings adjective, noun, verb . Then we write as many words as we can for each heading. In the video you can hear the children getting ideas from each other, as well as thinking about their spellings as they sound them out. The order of the headings is then used to build a ‘silly’ sentence using a sentence opener and an extra word to make the ‘ing’ ending of the verb make sense (we tend to use verbs in their ‘ing’ form as they are easier to spell, later we look at past tense endings).
Another activity that is good for sentence construction is to choose a sentence or phrase that a child has said and write each word onto post-it notes. These are then jumbled up to be re-ordered. We use this to talk about which words tend to go together (adjectives and nouns) and their order in the sentence. We often model them incorrectly too, and discuss how the new sentence sounds. This game can also be used to extend sentences by inserting new words (like description) between the post-its or replacing the post-its with alternative words.
As with reading, improvement comes with working at these skills little and often. If your child has completed any writing at home that they would like to share, do send it in via the office email address so that we can show it to the whole class.