Reading is fundamental to every content area in school. There is a big difference between a child that can read far above grade level, completely understand the story and the child that reads, but has no idea what he/she just read.
Here are some quick checkpoints parents and educators can use when choosing “just right book” for their child.
1. 3 Finger Rule:
If a child reads more than 3 words wrong on a page, it’s not a good independent book. Choose a different book. Remember: children learn to read through storybooks, ALWAYS let them choose their favorite storybook even if they are reading chapter books.
2. Identifying the Elements in the Story (Answering W&H Questions):
Characters- Identify the main character and supporting characters
Setting- Where does the story take place?
Problem- What is the problem in the story?
Steps to Solution- What steps are taking to solve the problem?
Solution- How is the problem solved?
Main Idea- What is the story mostly about?
3. Writing abou the Story
Not only is it important to talk about a story, but it’s also important to write about a story.
If your child is a great reader, but struggles with comprehension, these are a few things you can take into consideration:
1. Can your child read books fluently and accurately?
2. Check to see if there are any vocabulary, language/ processing issues.
3. Does your child struggle with short-term memory?
4. Is your child rushing through the passage?
Maybe your child needs more time, that’s O.K. too
FUN FACT: I’ve read some articles that suggest children should learn to read by age 7. There is no evidence that early readers out perform their peers in higher grades/tests.