You talk to your children every day. Sometimes you don’t realize how those simple conversations can help their future reading skills. Saying things like “First we will get dressed, then we will eat breakfast, and after that we will brush teeth,” help your children understand that there is a beginning, middle, and end. You can then transfer that concept to stories.
Developing narrative skills that is the ability to sequence and describe events can be done in the following ways:
Tell stories to your child. You can make up stories or even tell about your childhood.
Talk about what you are doing. Oral language helps build reading skills.
Read stories together. You may want to do a picture walk before you read and let your children tell you what is happening in the illustrations. Then read and see if those predictions were correct. If they were not correct, that is fine, and it provides another wonderful opportunity to talk about the story.
Tell or read classics like The Three Little Pigs. It might be fun to act the story out with the family.
Practice sequencing through stories.
Retelling stories will help your children understand what they hear and read.
You might even want to ask some of the following questions after you read a story.
How did the story start?
Then what happened?
How did the story end?
What was your favorite part?
Who did you like best?
What surprised you about the story?
What part did you think was funny or scary or exciting?
Keep it fun and exciting! If you show your enthusiasm, it will rub off on your children! Who knows what great stories they may tell or write!
Sandra Anderson, Youth Service Assistant