Disclaimer: I am a mom. I am a graduate student. I am not an expert. I do not have that Ph.D. after my name, but I have had lots of experience with reading with my own sons, and my 7 years of teaching experience. Some of the tips here might not work with your kid. Try what you think will work.
1. Read aloud to your child. Studies have shown time and time again that kids need to hear how language works so that they can internalize it when they read on their own. You say you’re not that a good reader yourself? Well, then… try…
2. Listen to Books on Tape. Again, it’s that hearing the language and listening for inflection, tone, pronunciation.
3. Model reading with your child. Show your child how great it is to read. Even if it’s a magazine, a newspaper, the comics, or a letter, when your child sees how much you enjoy reading, he/she will learn that reading is enjoyable. We try to have DEAR time (Drop Everything And Read) in our house.
4. Let your child read what he/she wants to read. Practice makes progress. If it’s a comic book, your child is still learning plot, characterization, sequencing, language (lots of comic have play on words, which make it fun to read and explain why the author used that in the situation). If it’s a magazine, your child is learning facts, how to judge if information is trustworthy, and if the information is timely. It doesn’t matter what format, just let your child READ, READ, READ.
5. Let your child read aloud to you. A caveat with this: do not overcorrect mistakes that your child makes. If it is a mistake that greatly compromises your child’s ability to comprehend the material, then make a correction. Your child will learn through reading aloud if it sounds correct or not. Reading aloud will also help with fluency, how fluid and easy the reading sounds. When a reader is more fluent in the language, comprehension is improved, and then motivation to read MORE happens!
I could go on and on about improving reading because that is my passion. If you want to research more about reading, you can click on any of the links in my sidebar in the Education category and find more fantastic information.
Happy Reading! Remember, March is Reading Month! 🙂