Shared Reading

Shared reading is a very good way for parents to help with their children’s reading. Research proves it helps develop reading fluency and comprehension and also develops a shared enthusiasm and confidence in the child.

Main Points

Shared reading should be done for five days each week over a period of around 8 weeks. Between 10 – 15 minutes is the recommended time to be spend reading. If however your child wants to do something else just wait until they are ready to do reading.

  • The setting for shared reading is very important. Try and find a place that is quiet and away from distractions.
  • Ensure that both you and your child are comfortable and relaxed and can both see the book.

Steps for Shared reading.

  • First talk to your child about the book- the title, cover picture, what they think its going to be about. Let your child do the talking.
  • You and your child both read out loud together. Match your speed with that of your child. Let them set the pace.
  • When your child comes to a word they don’t know give them time to look at the word and then you just say the word yourself, then let your child say it as well and carry on as before. You don’t make your child ‘break it up’ or ‘sound it out’.
  • Decide on a signal with your child ( a tap on the arm, nudge) so that he/she can then begin to read alone.
  • Again if he/she makes a mistake when reading alone you must read the word out loud for them and make sure your child says it right as well. Then you go back to reading out loud together until you get the signal to stop.

Through out the shared reading remember to praise you child and show them how pleased you are.

In addition it is nice to read to your child from a story that they might not be able to read themselves for a few minutes at the end of the shared reading session. This is great for building vocabulary.