Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Encourage a Breakdown...of Words!

Children who know that words are made up of smaller parts have an easier time tackling new words when they are reading. This allows them to break words into parts to sound out or decode them. Here are some fun, easy ways to help your child understand this concept:

RHYMING – Rhyming is one way that children hear parts of words. This aspect of phonological awareness helps them later in sounding out words. So, make up rhymes when you’re talking with your child. Play rhyming games. Read rhyming books. Encourage your child to come up with rhyming words on his own. Making up silly, nonsense words is okay, too, and will undoubtedly make it more fun!

SINGING – Songs are a wonderful way to build phonological awareness because there are different notes for different syllables. Babies are learning the rhythm of language, and young children are hearing parts of words. So, sing songs to your child. Listen to music. Teach your child songs that she can sing on her own. Sing often, sing everywhere, and don’t worry about singing on key!

CLAPPING – Though any type of clapping is usually pretty enjoyable for kids, clapping out words—one clap for each syllable—helps break down the words, improving your child’s phonological awareness. Clap when you talk, and clap when you sing. Have fun with it!

While, unfortunately, this is not guaranteed to prevent other types of breakdowns from occurring, it is one kind that you can encourage—even in public!

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