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Learning Tips for Home

Check out these educational tips to try at home with your child.

By GreatSchools Staff

Build your child's skills at home with these quick tips and activities.

Language Arts

Pre-K - 3rd grade

Labels

At home, put labels on objects in the house, such as a table and the bed in your child's bedroom. This will build your child's word recognition and help her associate letters and sounds with words.

Subscribe to a Magazine

Get your child a subscription to an age-appropriate magazine such as Nickelodeon, Ladybug or Highlights. His name on the address label is a personalized invitation to read.

Make Reading an Outdoor Adventure

Take it outside! Read aloud to your child on the front porch, in the backyard, at the park or beach. You can take turns reading. Model reading smoothly and with expression.

Home Library

Encourage reading at home by creating a sitting area with a book case and books at your child's reading level and interest. Organize the books into categories, such as adventure books and books about animals.

Rhyme Away

Rhymes can be a creative way to boost your child's reading skills. Rhyming helps him become familiar with the sounds, patterns and structures of written and spoken language. Make story time fun by reading rhyming books and nursery rhymes with your child, and have him point out the rhyming words.

Model Dictionary

When reading a book aloud to your child, model the good habit of looking up unfamiliar words in a dictionary. Encourage your child to do the same when she is reading on her own.

Hands-On Writing

Have your child form words using letters made of different materials such as clay, Play-Doh, cookie dough, shaving cream, etc.

Sharing Books

Read books about sharing. Discuss the story line with your child, and encourage her to make everyday connections to the characters.

4th grade - 5th grade

Just the Facts

Reporters are taught that every story should answer the questions: who, what, where, when, why and how. Read a newspaper article with your child and then ask him how the reporter answered those questions.

Pre-Read

Ask your child to try "pre-reading" a textbook chapter. Authors put "clues" to the main themes in the introduction, subheads, graphics, photo captions, conclusion and study questions. Reading these first will help your child take better notes and focus on what's important.

Keep in Touch

Once the birthday gifts are all unwrapped, it's time to write thank you notes. This is a great way to practice writing skills. Make it fun by letting your child decorate the card. He can draw, paint, or add stickers or rubber stamps to the notes.

Home Library

Encourage reading at home by creating a sitting area with a book case and books at your child's reading level and interest. Organize the books into categories, such as adventure books and books about animals.

Help Your Child Be an Expert

When your family gets a new board, computer or video game, have your child read the directions, become the expert and teach the rest of the family.

Comments from GreatSchools.org readers

02/25/2009:
"I love your science projects. My daughter learns visually and this gets her excited about science."
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