Helping your children to comprehend faster will assist them in succeeding with their school work. By becoming more involved with your child’s reading abilities, you can ensure that they do not fall behind in class. Children don’t enjoy reading if they struggle with comprehension, therefore it is best if they learn to comprehend faster from the youngest age possible.
There is no need to wait until the child is reading at a very efficient level before starting to work on comprehension techniques. Learning to read and comprehend should be taught together so that they can work together. Besides, children may get bored with reading if it has no meaning for them. When the child first learns to read a story and enjoy it, it is a major step in his life and everything possible should be done to encourage this initial fascination with reading.
Basic comprehension techniques can help children of all ages to comprehend faster. One of the best ways to improve this skill is to try and increase the child’s vocabulary. If a child has a very limited vocabulary, he/she will find most reading difficult, as words are constantly found within the reading that are not understood. When children find a word that they are unfamiliar with, (in reading), they will first try to sound it out. If they don’t know the word at all, sounding it out won’t help. If they do know the word, it will be recognized as soon as it is spoken.
To help increase their vocabulary, try to think up a couple of new words everyday, of which you think your child does not know the meaning. Use them in a sentence when speaking to your child and watch their reaction. They may ask you what it means, or you may have to find out if they understood what you said. Explain the meaning of the word and then have your child make up his own sentence including the new word to make sure that he has understood. Having a good vocabulary will enable your child to comprehend faster when reading.
Try to determine, now and then, how much of the text your child is really taking in. Allow them to read a section of the writing. Then ask some questions. The length of the reading and difficulty of the questions will depend on the age of the child and his/her current reading ability. Start with some general questions, and if they are answered well, move on to more detailed questions. Let your child read the section only once and not look at the reading when answering. Don’t let your child know that you will be testing him/her. It may cause the child to stress and try to read with extra caution. Do the testing randomly in a fun and casual manner.
Your child will be able to comprehend faster if he/she is encouraged to read more often. Consider dedicating 15 – 30 minutes each day for family reading time. Everyone in the family can sit together and silently read something they enjoy. Your child is more likely to take an interest in reading if they see you doing the same.
Being able to eventually speed read and comprehend faster will give your child a real advantage in school. Around the age of 12, children often pick up the skills of speed reading very easily. It is never too early to get involved with and improve your child’s reading abilities.