Getting Ready To Read: Learn How To Help And Encourage Your Child--from Babyhood To Grade School by Betty D. BoegeholdGetting Ready To Read: Learn How To Help And Encourage Your Child--from Babyhood To Grade School by Betty D. Boegehold

Getting Ready To Read: Learn How To Help And Encourage Your Child--from Babyhood To Grade School

byBetty D. Boegehold

Paperback | March 12, 1984

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How can I help my child become a good reader?

Getting Ready to Read emphasizes the vital link between good reading skills and a love of books. You’ll discover the importance of talking and singing to your baby, of playing with and reading to your toddler, of encouraging your pre-schooler’s curiosity, and of making your child aware of the importance of reading in your life. This warm, practical guide provides you with advice about games and activities that will pave the way to good reading skills as they bring hours of enjoyment to both parent and child.
You’ll discover:
• Why it’s important for children to develop reading skills at their own pace
• Which books to choose for each stage of your child’s development
• How to monitor TV watching, and how to use TV as a teaching tool
• Why all facets of your child’s development—physical, mental, and emotional—affect reading readiness
• How to integrate reading readiness activities into your daily life . . . and much more.
Featuring a special section with practice games and tests to help prepare your child for the Reading Readiness Tests administered by schools
Title:Getting Ready To Read: Learn How To Help And Encourage Your Child--from Babyhood To Grade SchoolFormat:PaperbackDimensions:284 pages, 8.5 × 5.5 × 0.75 inPublished:March 12, 1984Publisher:Random House Publishing GroupLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0345305191

ISBN - 13:9780345305190

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Read from the Book

Introduction: Why Read?   THE NEED TO READ   Why should we prepare our children to become successful readers? In the video-computer world of the near future, who will be reading? Will our children still need to read and to enjoy books?   The answer is: yes! Success in school—and later in life—still depends on the ability to read competently. To fully comprehend math, social studies, foreign languages, science, or computer interaction, children have to master reading first. They must not only decode words, but understand instructions and questions. No matter how much we use—or will use—visual and push-button teaching techniques, these methods still rely on comprehension of a written language. Those who can read and understand the records of our past will be less likely to repeat past errors and, we hope, may create new solutions to old problems. Literate young people will be the leaders of the future. Thus, a child without good reading skills will be a deprived child—deprived of a major asset for success in the adult world.   THE POWER OF READING   Reading is power: power to grasp the many facets of a business venture; power to understand the actions of a government that affects our daily activities; power to affect that government ourselves by our own use of words.   But, to me, the greatest power of reading is the effect it has on our personal lives. Good readers can search the past for answers, learn about the world around us, probe people’s guesses about the future, or soar on the wings of fantasy. Reading can change us: our personal opinions, our way of thinking, our political views, even our actions—all can be influenced by our reading.   Of course, we are affected, too, by the vividness of the world that TV represents. But TV images change so fast; people fall, ships crash, wars begin—all in a few winks of the eye. And we can’t stop and ponder their meaning or hold the pictures still while we grasp their import. We seldom see a subject explored in depth; the limits of time control the pictures. To know more, we must read more.   THE FIRST STEP TO READING   In the last decade, reading scores have plummeted; presidents, distinguished panels, educators, and laypeople have rushed to fill the air waves and printed pages with programs for correcting this alarming drop in literacy.   Concerned parents may feel bewildered by the various panaceas offered on all sides. Should they   return to basics (however basics may be interpreted)? teach two-year-olds to read? start school at three? even begin teaching while a child is in the womb?   A great deal of nonsense has been offered as a solution, some of it harmless, but some of it dangerous. Why? Because following some of the proffered plans, while initially producing a parrotlike response, tends in the long run to lower, not raise, reading achievement. Another reason for the continued drop in reading scores as a child progresses through school?   The total reasons for the overall decline in reading ability depend on a great many factors: the school’s programs and philosophies, the family support system, the makeup, background, and interests of the student body and teacher, group pressures from many sides—all have contributed to the national decline.   You, as a parent, may feel unable to effect much change in this overall problem, but you can help your own child to achieve reading success. The premise of Bank Street College is that, after years of research into how children learn, the best and most rewarding method of insuring long-lasting reading success is the enrichment of the preschool child’s learning life. In other words, reading readiness is the way to go—and you’re the one to do it!   WHY IS READING READINESS SO IMPORTANT?   Question: I don’t get it. If reading is important, why don’t we teach young children to read as soon as possible?   Answer: It can be bad for them, and it doesn’t work. Preparing children to read is a more important first step than the actual teaching of reading itself.   Question: Why?   Answer: That’s the purpose of this book. To discuss all the ways of pre-reading preparation that parents can practice, and why they should do it. Why teaching preschoolers to read is not a good idea. Why a holistic reading readiness preparation actually produces better readers. And what fun it can be.   Question: My friend’s four-year-old daughter taught herself a lot of words. So why shouldn’t her mother teach her more?   Answer: “Taught herself”—that’s the key phrase. The child did it herself from her own needs and curiosity. Mama can help when asked, but otherwise, hands strictly off.   Question: Why?   Answer: Read this book and you’ll find out. But here’s an overview of some of our basic reasons.   As you probably know, there are two essential parts to reading, which educators call decoding and comprehension. Decoding means figuring out what the letters and words are. In other words, decoding is the ability to look at the printed page and decipher the words, phrases, and sentences. Comprehension is what the letters and words mean. Comprehension is the ability to understand what concepts and images the words convey, what information they are giving, what feelings they arouse, what beauty or despair they illuminate.   It is easier to decode than to comprehend. Decoding is a necessary but a learned rote skill, one that can be learned in a series of planned steps for most children. But comprehension requires far more subtle skills. It requires a child to be exposed to rich experiences, usually by a guiding adult hand; a child that has been encouraged to question, to experiment, to test, to make judgments, evaluations, and conclusions, right or wrong. It requires a child with skills to approach new experiences with confidence and eagerness; and, above all, a child who has been “bathed” in language, who has been familiar with books and stories from crib days. Such a child brings a richness of understanding to what words mean, and is physically, emotionally, mentally, and socially—in other words, developmentally—ready to read successfully.   WHAT THE RESEARCH REVEALS   But what about that nagging feeling that your child may be missing out on something very important, if you don’t teach him to decode as early as possible?   Studies of the long-term advantages for children who have been forced to read at an early age do not show good results. They may show an initial advantage, but the well-prepared child soon not only catches up to them, but outdistances them. There is strong evidence that those children who are taught to read before they are school age become indifferent readers—those who read from necessity rather than with pleasure. And most important of all, according to many noted child psychologists, it is the child who has a long, rich reading readiness preparation that becomes the eager and independent reader.   Studies conducted by the New York City Board of Education show that five-year-old children who were taught to read lost almost all of their reading skills over the summer vacation. Further findings showed that children who got formal reading instruction before they were six were less likely to enjoy reading than those who began later. One of the few long-term reading research projects that followed a group of children from school entry through junior high school was conducted by the famed educator Carleton Washburn. The observers found that the adolescents who had been introduced to formal reading later than first grade were more enthusiastic spontaneous readers than those who began to read in first grade. (In Scandinavia and Russia, too, reading isn’t taught until age seven.) Eager spontaneous readers in post-elementary years are not only going to make better use of high school and college opportunities, but will be far better prepared for job opportunities in later life.   The titles of several highly respected books that agree with this “later reading” approach reflect the concern of the authors about the rush to teach preschoolers skills they are not developmentally prepared to master. The Hurried Child, by David Elkind; Don’t Push Your Preschooler, by Louise Bates Ames and Joan Ames Chase; and Don’t Push Me, I’m No Computer, by Helen L. Beck, all agree with this premise.   The child who reads when he is totally prepared to read establishes a habit that lasts throughout his schooling and beyond. The child who was made to read, or never given a rich reading background, only reads when she has to, and does not become a life-long book reader. So keep your eye on the positive long-term values as you enjoy working with your child in the present.   THE FIRST AND BEST TEACHER   Another important factor in our insistence that “good reading readiness” is more important than the actual teaching of reading, is that the child’s first teacher—you—is already equipped to provide the best reading readiness. For most parents, generation after generation, do provide such preparation even without knowing it. You probably have already begun to do so. Our aim is to make you more aware of the variety of activities that provide the best preparation, so that you will more consciously understand and plan for the kind of materials and guidance this book suggests.   And we also promise that you will have fun doing so—you and your child will both enjoy the benefits of this approach. Best of all, we assure you that this approach works!   So relax. Don’t join the rush to short-change children by overstructuring their first years with attempts to teach them the mechanics of reading. (Even those few children who teach themselves to decode words at an early age need the same kind of readiness experiences as other children.) We need to do what is appropriate for each of the developmental stages of childhood. Yes, there are lots of things that parents can do with the infant, the toddler, and the preschooler to prepare them for reading. For each stage there are specific activities that contribute to reading readiness, and parents are the best qualified to provide them. The premise of this book is that the preschool years of childhood should be a period of rich reading readiness; the more lasting promise is that your child will become not only a reader, but an eager, successful reader.