Now that school is back in full swing, that can only mean one thing…..homework woes have begun! Along with subject area homework such as Math, Science, Language Arts, and Social Studies, Miami-Dade County Schools require that all students in Elementary, Middle, and Senior High devote at least 30 minutes (daily) to reading.
Many teachers not only require a book log but also weekly book reports. Many schools require student participation in reading contests and have many incentives for extracurricular reading activities. Parents don’t STRESS! With a few easy tips on where to find books and how to choose the right book for your child, reading homework and participation in reading contests will be a breeze.
Where to find books?
If your child does not have a collection of books at home, use the public library. Obtaining a library card is fast and easy. Visit your local library or visit them on the web at www.mdpls.org . Not only does your local library have books but many offer free and exciting activities for both you and your child.
Another suggestion would be to speak with your child’s classroom teacher or your school’s Media Specialist. They can provide information to you about the school’s policy on checking out books.
How to choose the correct book for my child?
Once you have found a location for obtaining books for your child the next question might be “How do I know if I’m choosing the right book?”
During the first few weeks of school, your child will have or will soon be taking an Accelerated Reading Test (AR for short). This test determines your child’s independent reading level (the level at which your child can read without help). These results can be obtained from your child’s Reading teacher. Another test your elementary school aged child will be taking is the FAIR test (Florida Assessments for Instruction in Reading). This test is more in depth. It tests reading comprehension, reading fluency, and phonics. After the testing in complete you can call your child’s teacher and request a conference to discuss his or her individual results.
If you can’t wait for the testing to be complete or for a Parent/Teacher conference you can always ask your child to read a page or so from a book they choose and see how well it goes. If they seem to read with ease and can answer (who, what, where, when, why, and how) then they have selected a book on their level. If they seem to be laboring over the words on the page kindly suggest another book.
So now you know where to get books and how to choose the correct level book for your child BUT what about their interest in reading? What kind of books/stories will my child want to read? Simple…ask them! Asking /knowing your child’s interest (animals, sports, mysteries, adventures, fantasy, etc.) can make selecting a book easy. Also, share with your child what you enjoyed reading as a youngster. The emotional connection you had with a book, series, or author may interest your child.
Parents, remember to be a good reading role model for your child. When your child is reading, let them see you reading. Together you and your family can share the gift of literacy.
It is with great enthusiasm and excitement that Read2Succeed brings you these educational articles to help you and your child embrace learning and reading. Please make sure to visit our website at www.r2succeed.org to learn more about who we are, and join us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/r2succeed to see all of our wonderful activities and learn about several employment opportunities. Also, please join Read2Succeed every second Friday of the month at 7pm at Barnes and Noble in West Kendall for “It’s Story time!” If you have any suggestions, or information you would like for us to write about please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org