One of my favorite things about kindergarten is the no homework policy. Well, no required homework. It seems like there are hours of optional assignments we can do (and, Big being…well, Big, he often wants to). But when it comes to reading, I’ve found five ways to sneak it into the stuff we do every day too.
#1- Sidewalk City My kids love when I create scooter racetracks, and lately I’ve been adding street signs and some of our favorite spots around town. Big loves exploring the track, sounding out the words and even got the chalk out himself to show me why “Cone Zone” rhymes.
#2- What’s For Dinner Since food is of particular interest to Big, a menu seemed fitting. I included each and every ingredient so he’d have lots of words to figure out. If he couldn’t read it, all he had to do was look at his plate for clues.
#3- Run Errands Lately when we’ve been at the grocery store or on other shopping trips, I’ll ask Big to get me the “Huggies Overnights” or the “organic black beans”. It takes a bit longer, but he’s so proud when he realizes he can find things without help.
#4- Label It I made these toy bin labels a long time ago for the playroom because I was annoyed when the kids couldn’t find anything and didn’t help clean up. Somehow it hasn’t solved either of those problems, but it has become more fun for Big to discover that he can read them.
My mom used to teach elementary school and she pointed out that once you know how to read, you can’t help but read. So I figure the more words I put out there, the more Big is “practicing” reading. Now I just have to remember not to leave the laptop open…
How do you encourage your little ones to learn to read?