Learning to read is the single most important achievement of a child's academic life. All other success in school depends on this important skill. Yet many parents spend more time worrying about teaching their child to tie their shoes than they do about reading. Why should you give your child reading lessons? After all, isn't that what the professionals are supposed to do in school?
True, trained teachers are an important part of learning to read for most children, but no matter how skilled and dedicated your child's teacher may be they still have a couple dozen other children to worry about in addition to your child. You can focus your attention and energy better because you do not have to worry about teaching 25 children to read. You only have to teach one child.
You also know your child's strengths and weaknesses better than anyone else. You also know your child's interests. This means you can craft reading lessons and reading activities that will challenge and intrigue your child.
There is another important reason why you should be a part of teaching your child to read. Sometimes schools and reading programs fail to meet the needs of all children. Some children struggle with certain reading programs and fall behind their peers. If you are involved then you can spot these difficulties and take steps to intervene before it is too late. If you are not involved then you may now know until your child has fallen behind.
No matter how busy your schedule, you do have time to work in reading lessons because they should be short, more like mini lessons, in any case and many can be done while you are taking care of other chores such as shopping, driving, or cleaning.
Do not feel intimidated by the enormity of the project. Teaching a child to read takes years and a dedicated staff in most schools’ reading programs. However you do not need to take on the whole project on your shoulders. Work with your child's teacher and school reading program to reinforce lessons learned in school. If you have time to do more research then you can go beyond those but simply supporting the efforts of the formal reading program can do a lot to help your child.
You do not need to buy any special equipment or reading programs. Most often you can use books, paper and writing utensils from your home or local library to support your efforts.
You should give your child reading lessons because you should be a part of this important step in your child's development, you are the best equipped person to teach your child, and you do not have to do it alone. Teaching your child to read can be fun and rewarding for you both.
Deanna Mascle shares more tips about How To Teach Reading with her newsletter Preschool Lessons and at http://teachyourchildtoread.info/howtoteachreading.php