5 Activities That Will Help Your Child Learn to Read Early


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As parents, we all want our little ones to succeed in everything that they do. One of the ways we can do that is to help them learn to read as early as possible. Not only will your child enjoy the satisfaction of being able to read on her own, but also you’ll get to wear your proud mom smile whenever she reads a sign, menu, or card out in public. Using a few simple activities, you can help her learn to read in record time!

1. Picture/Word Association

This is a technique used by many early reader books as well as television shows, but you can also use it around the house. Make up signs for things that your child uses often and, before long, she will be associating the things in her life with the words that she reads on the signs. Use your child’s favorite colors and pictures to make the signs even more appealing. For instance, take a picture of her favorite shirts and put it on the drawer where her shirts are kept with a label that reads “shirts.”

2. The Car Game

There are signs and storefronts all over the roads that you travel with your child every day. Each one has pictures or other things that show what is inside. While you’re stopped at a red light or when you arrive at your destination, point out the signs and have your child read them. Of course, this could always backfire when she sees the signs for “doctor’s office” and “dentist,” but by then you’ll already be there.


  1. I encourage parents to PLAY with words and forget about the goal of getting them to be early readers. Remember that our children keenly sense our hidden agendae.

    I read to my sons while they were in utero…because I love to read. I read to my sons when they were babies…because I love to read and wanted them to love to read, too. I read to them at bedtime and any other time during the day when they brought me books. We acted out the stories at THEIR initiatives. I followed their leads. They directed me to do and be certain characters. We recited Sandra Boynton books in the car while we drove. They dictated their stories to me and then they illustrated them and then I read them to them.

    They memorized the stories; they loved bookstores and libraries. We spelled out words in the sand at the beach; they dictated lists of their favorite words to me and we posted them on our walls.

    We had fun with words and reading and everywhere we found or made books.

    I never engaged in any formal teaching. I never had the goal of making them early readers. I respected that each of them is a unique person and designed to learn at their own pace.

    Oh. Did I mention that the elder son read at age 4 and the younger one at 3 years and 4 months?

    It wasn’t my goal. But I guess it IS a reflection of great love of language and words…

  2. The first one is really great! I work with children with communication delays and labeling things for them is a great way to get those first sounds out. Great article!

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