Pre-reading skills are the skills children need BEFORE they can learn to read. Many of these skills are learnt naturally, during the course of a normal childhood and nursery environment. By talking and reading to your child, you will be doing a great deal to develop these essential skills. It does help if you know what you are doing, though, so that you can make the best use of your child’s natural inquisitiveness during the pre-school years.
The Pre- Reading skills:
- Matching – When we read, part of what we do involves matching. Children learn to match shapes, patterns, letters and finally words
- Rhyming – Research shows that children who can understand about rhyming words have a head start in learning to read and write
- Letter skills – As well as looking at letters, children need to learn what sounds the letters can make
- Direction – Print goes from left to right. We know that but children need to practice it (especially left handed children)
- Motor Skills – since reading and writing are best taught together, pencil control is important
- Concepts of print – this really means ‘ how we look at books’. Following print the right way, turning pages, looking at pictures, ‘ where are the words..?
- Language skills – the more experience children have of language, the more easily they will learn to read. Your child needs to hear and join in conversation (with adults and children), and listen to stories and poetry of all sorts