With most things in life, consistency is key. This holds true when building literacy skills, as well! As students go on break for the holidays, there’s a risk they may lose valuable reading skills they recently established in the classroom. Our team at ALLMemphis wants ALL parents to know that there are steps you can take to engage your child in meaningful literacy experiences over the holiday break. Below, we outline a few.
Establish a set reading time for the entire family
The holidays are the perfect time to read an annual favorite or explore new books. Establish a joint reading time each day, where you read a chapter or two of your favorite book, while your child reads a book he picked out. This encourages reading by example. Also, your young reader can be challenged to work through words on his own – while still having help nearby.
Have your emergent reader follow along the text with their finger, which can help them absorb the information better. No matter what method you use, setting aside intentional reading time with your child is a great way to keep literacy skills intact over winter break.
Join in on seasonal activities
Writing is just as important as reading is, and there are several fun ways that you can incorporate writing activities into seasonal fun. One way is by writing thank you notes! Gift giving is a common tradition across many different holidays – challenge emerging readers to write thank you notes for the gifts they receive this year. Relatives and friends will love the thoughtful gesture.
Two other fun, seasonal activities are to write wishlists for gifts and mail letters to Santa! A wishlist is useful for your holiday planning but can also be a fun keepsake for parents. And, many places have special mailboxes just for letters to Santa. Both of these activities are often so fun for kids that they forget they’re learning while they do them – a perfect way to keep literacy skills fresh!
Take advantage of extra time
Kids spend most of their days at school, which means it can be hard to find time for special literacy-related activities. Take advantage of their holiday break by turning their reading or writing opportunities into exciting experiences. A classic favorite is to bake the recipes you read about in a book. You can also recreate scenes by acting out skits or embarking on a scavenger hunt!
You can also blend literacy skills with critical thinking development by challenging your young reader to design their own game with written rules. This not only provides them with an educational activity they’re proud of, but it also teaches them how to create and convey information independently – an important component in reading comprehension.
No matter how you incorporate literacy experiences into your days this winter break, the value of consistency is infinite. ALLMemphis encourages ALL parents and guardians to use this season as an opportunity to sharpen their little readers’ skills with intentional, fun activities. Learn more about how our team works – day in and day out – to increase literacy and education equity throughout our Memphis community on our website.