Complementing Your Child's Learning at Home
There are a number of ways that you can complement your child’s learning at home, even in the early years of their education.
Helping with homework is a more obvious method for older children who have structured homework, but there are plenty of opportunities in everyday situations for you to boost a young child’s education at home.
It is important to realise that learning should be, and can be, fun for younger children. Wherever possible you should encourage children to learn for themselves, rather than trying to pressure them to learn in too structured a way as this may prove counter-productive.
Learning Words and ReadingThere is no doubt that reading with your child is extremely beneficial in helping them learn to recognise words, and many schools actively promote reading at home in home-school agreements. These home-school agreements often recommend that parents read to their children on a regular basis and encourage teaching your child a love of books. Joining the local library and letting your child choose their own books will help them too.
Helping your child learn to read isn’t just about books, and there are lots of ways that you can encourage them to read. It is important to make this learning experience as much fun as possible, and making up games around words and letters is a great way to achieve this. For example, you could ask your child to spot the letters of their name while they are out and about. The possibilities are endless with car number plates, road signs, shop displays and more. Of course, there are educational computer games and other interactive toys available to help make learning to read more enjoyable. Magnetic letters are great for making words together on the fridge, or other surfaces, and there are even special foam letters that can be used in the bath for some additional learning fun while they wash!
Many schools ask children to bring in items that begin with a particular letter when they are first learning to read. This is a great way to let your child explore the names of objects and you should encourage them to help you pick an item, and be as creative as you can. Picture dictionaries are a great way to start recognising what begins with a particular letter.