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The Road to Reading

Learning to read doesn't just happen. To become readers, kids need to have rich experiences with language at a young age. When you talk, sing, read to, and play with an infant, toddler, or preschooler, you're laying the foundation for reading.

The learning-to-read stages

  • Babies listen to the sound of your voice and try to imitate your words.
  • Within 18 months, toddlers can make sense of familiar words and use them, one at a time.
  • Over the next two years, kids begin to talk in sentences. If you and other adults talk and read to them, their vocabularies grow.
  • When you point to words as kids read aloud and show them how to write their names, children as young as three and four become aware of printed words and know that they have meaning.
  • Before long, children can name letters of the alphabet, connect letters with speech sounds, and scribble pretend messages.

    Importance of talking and listening
    Keep your kids on the road to reading by talking with and listening to them. They need to be exposed to a wide vocabulary, complex sentences, and experiences that build a broader understanding of their world.

    Learn the Skills Kids Need to ReadSM

    Use the 20-Question, Get Ready to Read! Screening Tool

    to find out if your child has the skills she needs to learn to read.
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