|Tips#1: Read Together Every Day|
|Read to your child every day. Make this a warm and loving time when the two of you can cuddle close together. Bedtime is an especially great time for reading together.|
|Tips#2: Give Everything A Name|
|You can build comprehension skills early, even with the littlest child. Play games that involve naming or pointing to objects. Say things like, "Where's your nose?" and then, "Where's Mommy's nose?" Or touch your child's nose and say, "What's this?"|
The answer seems obvious. We go to school to learn, to interact with peers and become well educated citizens of the world. Science, math, history, geography and languages are all so very important and they're the reason why kids are sent away every morning with school backpacks and bags stuffed full of books. But there are completely different reasons why kids love going to school. And it definitely has nothing to be with exams and homework.
School is where we make our first friends, and in most cases, they're the friends we make for life. From exchanging opinions on the latest school bags or movie stars, we grow up to exchange opinions on our kids' school backpacks online and well, movie stars again. Guess some things never change. These are the friends who you'll pull pranks with, joke with and get in trouble with. They know you inside-out, they know your families even better than you know the contents of your school bag.
Speaking of contents of your school bag, there's something even more important and far more exciting. The contents of everyone's lunch box. The snack and lunch breaks are what everyone looks forward to. When delicious aromas waft through the air even before classes end. And once the bell rings, out come the lunch boxes and slyly hidden morsels of food that everyone dives into. No one's lunch is safe, whether you want to share or not, you'll find a hand taking your food even before you have a chance to take the first bite.
|Tips#3: Say How Much You Enjoy Reading Together|
|Tell your child how much you enjoy reading with him or her. Look forward to this time you spend together. Talk about "story time" as the favorite part of your day.|
|Tips#4: Be Interactive|
|Engage your child so he or she will actively listen to a story. Discuss what's happening, point out things on the page, and answer your child's questions. Ask questions of your own and listen to your child's responses.|
Games period was the next break in routine. Precious and rare, just on two days a week. Where all our pent up energy was given free reign and we forgot about all the books and homework and tests stuffed into school backpack bags and just focussed on having fun. We played until the last ring of the bell and sauntered back into class as slowly as snails. The trick was to waste at least 15 minutes of the next class, drinking water, wiping off sweat and settling back into our seats, much to the annoyance of which ever teacher was present.
And towards the end of the day we all waited, looking at the clock, watching its every move. Everything was sneakily put away, books were packed into the school backpacks and bags. All of us geared up to run out the minute the bell rang. And when it did, all order was abandoned and in a huge wave, we all rushed out the doors towards freedom. That meant going to the ice-cream man across the street for a quick treat or the bakery down the road. We walked, cycled and caught buses to go home. That short transit time was another small escape from dreary school life.
Walking meant impromptu games of cricket or football. Cycling invariable led to races, jumping over bumps and sliding down slopes. While bus rides were a circuitous way to get home, giving us more time to hang out with our friends.
|Tips#5: Read It Again And Again And Again|
|Your child will probably want to hear a favorite story over and over. Go ahead and read the same book for the 100th time! Research suggests that repeated readings help children develop language skills.|
|Tips#6: Talk About Writing, Too|
|Draw your child's attention to the way writing works. When looking at a book together, point out how we read from left to right and how words are separated by spaces.|