How to Teach Your Child to Read or Improve Reading Skills

 Submitted by: Jenna Richardson

One of my favorite children’s books is Seven Blind Mice. In this story, each mouse goes separately to try and identify a foreign object. Each comes back with a mysterious tale of a strange creature. Each tells only part of the story. It isn’t until they join every perspective are they really able to identify the creature.

That story reminds me of what it is like to teach a child to read. We each have some ideas. We all know some things that have been successful. Every curriculum teaches pieces of the puzzle, but until now, I never was able to construct the whole creature.

I am thrilled to pass along the news that there is a systematic, research based FREE way to teach your child to read or improve their reading skills! All you need is a computer, a printer and Internet access. The Florida Center for Reading Research has identified five pieces of the reading puzzle. For each of the five components, they have identified sub-skills that comprise these components. Then comes the easy part, at least for us. They have created hundreds of printable games that can teach and reinforce these skills. They are available to teachers and parents alike via their web site, From the home page, click on “Student Center Activities” and you will find student activities for grades K-5.

You will invest a little time in printing and cutting out the activities, but you will actually be targeting specific, critical skills for solving the reading mystery for your child. These games are great fun and will facilitate meaningful instruction. The website also provides instruction for this type of teaching, as well as a glossary if some of the terms are new to you. What a treasure to dissect and reconstruct this mysterious creature called “Reading”!