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Get Your Preschooler Ready to Read

By: Courtney Newman

Even though it felt like you barely blinked, your baby is now standing before you as a preschooler, ready and eager to learn.  We all recognize the importance of reading skills, but where do you even begin? How do you begin transitioning from solely reading books aloud to helping them learn to read?

It can be a lot.  It’s a big step, and it can be a little intimidating.  After all, every website and hack on Pinterest has its tips and tricks, don’t they?  In reality, every child is different, and not every tip or idea will work well with each child.  However, that doesn’t mean those tips aren’t worthwhile, just try not to get discouraged if they happen to not work for your family.

5 Signs Your Preschooler is Ready to Read

While not every child will demonstrate all of these signs of reading readiness, it’s a good place to start!  Before we get into the signs, though, you may be wondering, “What is reading readiness?” When children have reached a certain stage in their development, they will begin showing an interest in learning more, which is manifested in a variety of ways.  We refer to these as signs of “reading readiness,” which is essentially a stage when children are going to be most receptive to learning more advanced lessons than they have previously.

  • Actively engaging during storytime.
  • Pretending to read out loud.
  • Demonstrating strong feelings about which books to read.
  • Pretending to read on their own.
  • Understanding letter sounds and the idea of sounding out words.

5 Ways to Help Your Preschooler Prepare to Read

Now that you know your child is ready to read, there are a few steps you can take to prepare them.  Take your time, relax, and make these fun. The more your preschooler is enjoying themselves, the more they will progress.  Preschool is all about encouraging children to learn through fun and the natural curiosity that stems from play.

In addition to the five ways below, perhaps you may like the idea of game schooling.  There are several excellent reading comprehension games available on the market for preschoolers.  These games aim to help children learn to read and to understand phonics instruction, while keeping the experience fun, lighthearted, and without any pressure.

The teaching of reading is not a sprint, it’s a marathon.  There will be regressions, there will be obstacles. This is an entirely new concept to preschoolers, and it can be difficult for them to process at times.  We can get headaches when struggling to learn something new, and kids may experience the equivalent struggle in their own ways. It’s important to try to stay encouraging and positive, while also praising their success.

  • Work on oral language skills. Give your preschooler time to talk about things that matter to them. Ask them to describe how they are feeling, or what they think about certain things.  Truth be told, it can be tiring, but it will begin sharpening your child’s abilities to channel their thoughts into words. Another idea is to consider making a game from rhyming words together!  Ask your child to think of a word that rhymes with the one you say, and vice versa. It’s a sure way to get them laughing! These are considered pre-reading skills.
  • Read aloud daily. You have likely already been reading with your child since they were an infant, but let’s put a twist on read alouds now.  Consider reading books in which they are specifically interested, or books they choose for themselves. Reading with kids, especially when they have a say in which books to read, can motivate their reading engagement.
  • Use fill-in-the-blanks with favorite books. Is there a book you read daily and could recite from memory?  Try skipping over words and ask them to fill it in verbally as you read.
  • Describe how the book works. For example, point out the cover, the title, how to turn pages properly, reading from left-to-right, and so on.
  • Make literature a part of everyday routine. Let’s make storytime more than just before bed or naps.  Talk with your preschooler about your favorite books, about why we love reading, and let them catch you reading books yourself.  You can inspire an interest in reading just from demonstrating your own.

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29 Responses to Get Your Preschooler Ready to Read

  1. FainaSmirnoff on June 17, 2021 at 5:43 am

    I enjoyed reading this article, as a soon-to-be mom this is very helpful. I can’t wait to welcome my baby and hopefully I can apply the tips that you shared with us 🙂

    • Andrea Dillon on June 17, 2021 at 7:02 am

      That’s great to hear. Glad we could help!

  2. Larry55 on March 17, 2021 at 11:20 pm

    Thank you for all the information. Im staying in Germany and also I will Let My friend read the articles here.

  3. nichole143 on March 16, 2021 at 7:41 am

    I’ve visited this site again to read through the article. It is very helpful to me as a first-time mom. Thanks a lot!

    • Andrea Dillon on March 16, 2021 at 9:07 am

      Thanks! So happy we can help!

  4. amlidajame25 on December 3, 2020 at 2:53 am

    Excellent post keep it up.

  5. Michele on November 17, 2020 at 6:31 am

    Thanks a lot for this Preschooler tips!
    Michele –

  6. JoshBarl on November 8, 2020 at 3:10 am

    Thanks for the advice!

  7. nichole143 on October 19, 2020 at 6:06 am

    This is such a big help for the first time, mom, like me. Thank you for the tips!

    • Andrea Dillon on October 19, 2020 at 8:01 am

      You are very welcome. So happy to help!

  8. janejones4237 on September 17, 2020 at 12:19 am

    I don’t see my nephew’s 5 signs of Reading, maybe he need more time to learn.
    I’ll try some other time after I finish my everyday yard care.

    • Andrea Dillon on September 22, 2020 at 12:05 pm

      Just keep up with the reading aloud and word play and I am sure your nephew will get there!

  9. nichole143 on August 25, 2020 at 9:25 am

    I’m glad I was able to find your informative article. I’m a first-time mom and this article will really help me. Thanks a lot!

    • Andrea Dillon on August 26, 2020 at 8:22 am

      You are very welcome! So glad we can help!

  10. johnrico022117 on May 27, 2020 at 8:44 am

    This is really great! You may be experienced a lot to know the signs for preschoolers especially when they are pretending to read. I don’t really know about preschoolers but this topic made me look for my niece a bit longer and observing her. And yes! The signs were there and when my niece is watching a video, my niece also sings with it. Thanks for this post and I get to learn more about preschoolers’ stage. I am still observing my niece as of now.


    • Andrea Dillon on May 27, 2020 at 5:46 pm

      Thanks! Happy you found this useful!

  11. chrisjohn2211 on May 18, 2020 at 5:37 am

    Wow. I can see these 5 signs of my nephew. I will try this to get my nephew ready to read. Thank you for the useful information you gave. Then I can proceed to number reading to my nephew slowly after he is ready to read. Thanks.

    • Andrea Dillon on May 18, 2020 at 8:26 am

      You’re welcome! I’m so glad you found this helpful!

  12. fredluis721 on October 22, 2019 at 8:54 pm

    This is one of the good articles you can find in the net explaining everything in detail regarding thI will must share this blog and the information i found here really has no value in money but more than it. Thanks for this nice effort which you put here in the shape of this post.

  13. Mazikeen on October 2, 2019 at 9:21 am

    Thank you for all these helpful tips, really glad I found this article. I will try and use these for our children. – Maze & Maria

    • Andrea Dillon on October 2, 2019 at 9:47 am

      Awesome to hear! I hope you check out our other posts as well! We have lots of great ideas and help for homeschoolers on the site. If you can’t find what you need just let me know!

  14. Meggy27 on September 27, 2019 at 1:15 pm

    Thanks for this useful tips, I will try to apply this to my kid.

    • Andrea Dillon on September 30, 2019 at 1:56 pm

      You are very welcome! Hope they help your child!

  15. russelroy421877 on September 23, 2019 at 7:48 am

    This is a very helpful post for parents. Thanks so much!
    Roy │

    • Andrea Dillon on September 23, 2019 at 5:51 pm

      You are very welcome! So happy to help!

  16. bell621iran on August 22, 2019 at 6:14 am

    Thank you very much for sharing this very useful information.
    Game Lover – https://games.lol/

    • Andrea Dillon on August 22, 2019 at 5:15 pm

      You are very welcome.

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