The importance of ‘just reading’
How much and how often children read really matters. During this challenging time of school closures, ‘just reading’ is one of the best ways to keep children learning and growing.
Once children have mastered decoding through their phonics work, reading as much and as widely as possible will ensure that they continue to develop, not just academically, but emotionally too. And the best way to improve reading is the most enjoyable – reading! As the reading scientist Mark Seidenberg puts it, “The serious way to improve reading – how well we comprehend a text and, yes, speed and efficiency – is this: Read. As much as possible. Mostly new stuff.” Try to encourage your child(ren) to read a variety of stories, non-fiction and poetry, if you can.
We ask that you try to listen to your child reading aloud, even if they are in Key Stage 2. Enjoy talking about the books they read and discuss unfamiliar words. Reading aloud will help children to build their fluency, so that when they read silently the ‘voice in their head’ is fluent too.
A guide for parents to support reading fluency is given below.
To encourage children to read themselves and for you to read to/with children during these unusual times, this page contains useful support documents and a range of weblinks to free books online, including links to free audio books, or authors reading their books live.