Learning to read

How can I help with knowing when my child should take a breath  [Ep 62] 

Getting your child to read with more fluency 

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In this episode, we will address a common concern raised by an email subscriber: how can parents help their child learn when to take a breath while reading? 

Incorporating these strategies into your child’s reading routine will help them develop the necessary skills to know when to take a breath. Remember, fluency is a crucial aspect of reading, and with practice, your child will become more confident and efficient.

In this episode, about helping your child to know when to take a breath you will learn:

Before we delve into specific strategies, let’s familiarize ourselves with a fluency rubric. The rubric is divided into four areas: smoothness, accuracy, rate, and expression.

1. Smoothness: The goal is for children to read smoothly with occasional breaks. They should be able to self-correct when faced with difficult words or sentence structures. Emphasize the importance of punctuation in maintaining smoothness while reading.

2. Accuracy: Ensure that your child accurately reads each word. This aspect of fluency is closely tied to phonics, so encourage the use of phonics rules and sight words to improve accuracy.

3. Rate: Aim for your child to read at a conversational pace, as if they were talking to a friend. This helps them maintain engagement and understanding of the text.

4. Expression: Expressive reading adds life and meaning to the story. We will explore this aspect in more detail next week. Encourage your child to use varying volume and expression while reading.

Strategies to Help Your Child:

Now that we understand the fluency rubric, let’s explore some strategies to help your child know when to take a breath while reading:

1. Tap for Punctuation:

When your child encounters a full stop or period, they should pause to take a breath. This concept might be new for beginners, so it’s essential to reinforce it. Ask your child to tap twice when they reach a full stop and tap once for a comma. This physical action helps them internalize the concept of pausing at appropriate moments.

2. Focus on Punctuation:

Encourage your child to pay attention to punctuation marks, such as question marks or exclamation points. Each mark indicates a change in tone or expression. By consciously considering these marks, your child will improve their understanding of when to take a breath.

3. Practice with Texts:

Choose a few short texts for your child to practice. As they read, remind them to tap for punctuation and take a breath when needed. You don’t have to do this for an extended period, but it’s an effective method to reinforce the skill.

4. Avoid Overthinking:

While it’s crucial for your child to understand the importance of punctuation, it’s equally essential to avoid overwhelming them. Encourage them to practice these techniques for a short period without adding too much pressure. With time, it will become natural for them to know when to take a breath.

Links mentioned in this episode about taking a breath and fluency:

Reading Made Delicious Resources to help support you

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Content Disclaimer

The information contained above is provided for information purposes only. The contents of this episode are not intended to amount to advice and you should not rely on any of the contents of this podcast. Professional advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from taking any action as a result of the contents of this podcast. Sarah Travers disclaims all liability and responsibility arising from any reliance placed on any of the contents of this episode.

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