A child's progress can be boosted by five months extra progress over a year if their parents get involved in their education – by reading and talking with them at home. Poorest children can be up to 19 months behind their wealthiest classmates when they start school at age five, according to a recent study by the Sutton Trust.
Research shows that the most important thing you can do to help your child achieve at school is read with them. Little and often is the key!
There are three things that your child needs to learn to do:
- Decode words
- Understand what they have read
- Enjoy it!
Reading with your child should be enjoyable. The more fun you have, the more likely you are to instill a love of reading. Encourage discussion with your child when reading with them. They will probably ask you some interesting questions, so don’t be afraid to stop reading and explore these further.
Here are some tips for engaging reluctant readers:
- Listen to audiobooks to get them interested in stories
- Show them that you love reading too. Visit the library together and choose some books for you and for them.
- Go for something that you know will engage your child. Perhaps they are really into wildlife, so a non-fiction book may be a good place to start.
- Ensure your child can easily access books in your home. Have shelves at child height and books in each room.
This PDF from Springboard has many more ideas for how to make reading as enjoyable as possible.
The Oxford Owl website has 250 free, tablet-friendly e-books for you to access at home. You can access the website here.
Learning to spell is a highly complex business. Some children learn to spell effortlessly – most get there in the end, but too many find the process of learning to spell arduous, painstaking and, sadly, boring. The spelling test may be great for those who can already spell, but for others it makes for a scary morning. Most children get most spellings right on the day, but forget them when coming to use them in future work, others just get them wrong. For these reasons, it is necessary to have an approach which meets the needs of all children and allows them to develop their skills at an appropriate rate, in order that they can happily spell common words accurately and develop a range of strategies to tackle more complex words with confidence.
Spelling guide for parents
- Help your child be epic with maths CBeebies - http://www.bbc.co.uk/cbeebies/grownups/help-your-child-with-maths
- Developing Maths Skills for 4-11 year olds
- Oxford Owl - support for parents
- Helping your child with maths
- Times Tables Funpack
- Activities to support Maths outside the classroom
Using the internet at home
Here are some tips on how to keep your children safe online.
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