Reading at Home

Reading at Home

At Cavendish High Academy, we are continuing our drive to encourage our students to read for pleasure.

We know how important it is for teachers, parents and carers to work together to support our young people. Reading together at home is one of the easiest but most important ways in which you can help your child. As you share books you are helping improve your child’s reading skills and also showing them how important and enjoyable reading is.

Here are some of the ways you can help your child read at home:

  • Be a reading role model -

Let your child see you reading at home and share your excitement and enjoyment with them. It could be anything e.g. a book, magazine, newspaper - just show them you are having fun.

  • Read aloud and enjoy a book together-

Reading at home should also involve you reading to your child. Make choosing a book together fun; you could visit the public library or choose a book that is already at home. This is a good opportunity to allow your children to read books that they can’t read themselves yet. A love of reading can be created by letting a child choose a book they desperately want to read, even if it is too challenging for them.

  • Talk, talk, talk -

Talk before you start, talk during and talk after you have finished reading a book. Ask questions about the setting and characters, make predictions or talk about your favourite part.

  • Praise, praise, praise

Like with talking, praise before, during and after reading to instill confidence in your child. Let your child's class teacher know about what they have read at home too. This will allow your child’s teacher to talk to and praise your child for reading at home.

  • Use phonic strategies -

Ask your child to sound out an unknown word. Look at the letters or sounds in a difficult word and support your child in sounding out the word. Then see if they can blend the sounds together to read the word. Make sure you encourage your child to re-read the section they struggled with to develop fluency.

  • Learn common exception words

Help your child learn how to recognise the common exception, or tricky words that don’t follow a regular pattern.  Once they recognise these words they won’t waste their time trying to sound out words that don’t follow a regular pattern.

  • Allow self-correction -

If your child mispronounces a word do not interrupt them immediately. Allow the child to read the rest of the sentence and see if they recognise the sentence doesn’t make sense, then support them in re-reading.

  • Use the picture

Use the pictures to look for clues and discuss what the word or phrase could be.

  • Skip unknown words

If your child is really struggling with a word, instead of telling them, ask them to read to the end of the page. Can they work out the word in context?

  • Use punctuation

Does the sentence have speech marks or an exclamation mark? Read with expression or maybe try using a different voice. You can be as silly as you like.

Activities to try at home

Make a scrapbook with your child about their favourite star, group or team. Let them cut pictures out of magazines and papers and write their own captions.

Download/buy a book of crosswords and word searches and try to solve them together. Make up your own puzzles to try out on family and friends.

For more information visit

 Helpful Links:

Stuck for what to read?
If your child is finding it difficult to know what they want to read, here are some websites you may find helpful:

 Frequently Asked Questions

Which books are best?

  1. Books your child likes.
  2. Books suggested by your child’s teacher.
  3. Books your child chooses from a library or bookshop that they want to read.
  4. Never be afraid of re-reading books.

 What else can my child read?

●     Comics

●     Magazines

●     Travel brochures

●     Instructions or recipes

●     Television guides

●     Information books

●     Manuals

●     Newspapers

●     Poems

●     Taped/CD/Recorded stories

●     Sports Reports

●     Shopping lists…..

 My child is a good reader. Can I still help?

YES! Although children will often want to read in their heads when they become fluent readers and you should not insist on too much reading aloud, there are still many things that you can do.

Discuss with them what they have read – about the character, about the plot, about the important parts of the story, about what they have learnt from the information, about their feelings as they read the story…

For example;

●      Which part of the story did you like best? Why?

●      What do you think will happen next?

●      Would you like X as a friend? Why?

●      What do you think X should have done when..?

●      How do you think the story will end?

●      Was the information detailed enough?

Encourage them to think about the way the book has been written; the print, the layout and the illustrations.

●      Take your child to the library

●      Help your child to choose books

●      Try reading bits of a book together into a recorder using different voices!

 My child won’t read, no matter what I do. How can I help?

●      Read to your child as much as possible

●      Don’t make an issue out of it

●      Talk to your child’s class teacher

●      Working together will help


We greatly appreciate all the support you give in supporting and encouraging your children to read at home and we are looking forward to an exciting year full of reading ahead!