Home School Tips for Teaching Reading

If you have a home school, you will appreciate these tips gathered from parents and professionals.

For goodness sake, let them talk!

Let young children tell or retell a story. This makes for good home schooling. Let children rehearse a fairy tale, or make up their own. Show them a picture and have them tell or make up a story. Narration leads to good writing skills.

The experts know how to say it.

In your home school, read out loud from authors who can tell a good story. Nothing is as entertaining or captivate (for young and old) as a well-written children's book. And just think of the new vocabulary words your children will pick up in a fun way!

As close as your own backyard.

Home schools have an advantage-they are held at home-an education paradise! Think of the variety of life forms in your own yard--birds, trees, flowers and insects. Buy your child a notebook to draw and name things that he/she observes in nature. Will this help your child learn to write and read? Of course.

The refrigerator art gallery.

Remember the masterpieces you drew in school, how your mom displayed them on the refrigerator? Children love to be praised. Make your refrigerator your home school art gallery: display pictures of great artists and discuss them with your child. He/she will gain an appreciation for fine art. Who knows where it may lead? And art helps reading, too.

Music to sooth the soul.

If your refrigerator is your art gallery, your CD player is your home school concert hall. Expose your children to the masters: Mozart, Beethoven, Bernstein and Gershwin. Let music fill your home and be part of your child's education. You may be surprised how music appreciation helps reading skills.

In every fat lesson there's a skinny lesson trying to come out.

Keep home school lessons short. Try to remember the best lessons of your school years. They were probably quick and powerful. If, as an adult, you have a hard time sitting and concentrating for an hour, imagine how hard that is for an energetic child.

The twenty-days-to-make or-break-a-habit rule.

Some experts say that twenty days of concerted effort will make or break a habit. One habit at a time-that is the key. Persist and be patient. Good habits will come and bad ones will be broken. Start early on. Good habits developed at a young age can last a lifetime.

Dive in, the water's fine.

We hold back too much. Progressively push children into better and more challenging reading. They may struggle at first, but as they gain vocabulary and reading skills, they will learn to enjoy real books. Fine literature, poetry, great art, classical music, history, science--these are the treasures of life contained in the pages of books.