DIY Activities To Develop Reading Readiness In Your Preschoolers

*for ages 3-6

Learning to read is undoubtedly a very important life skill, one that determines all future success. But how do you get your child ready to read? Read on for some activity suggestions, to help children develop reading readiness skills, to help them turn into independent and confident readers:

 Set up children to be confident and fluent readers, by building their foundation for reading early on.


Why These Skills Are Important

To be able to read, a child has to be able to identify and differentiate between letters first. Also, syllables, word groups, word families, etc. have their base in identification. These following activities help children develop and sharpen their identification and differentiation skills, getting them ready for reading.

#Activity: Sort The Card

You will need: Any solid coloured paper (2-3 different colours) that can be turned into a card, a pair of scissors
How To Play: Cut up the paper to create square-shaped ‘cards’ of two different colours. Ask your child to identify the colours. Keep adding more cards of the same two colours, and task your child with sorting them into same colour piles.
Level Up: You can move from 2 colours to 3, then 4, and so on. You can even teach shapes from this activity, by cutting the cards into circles, triangles, etc.

#Activity: The Card Pattern

You will need: The cards created for the earlier activity
How To Play: Show your children the colour cards in a pattern like “Red, Red, Blue”. Repeat this pattern. Now, ask your child to make the same pattern, by themselves. You can even try this activity with multiple different patterns, and with more colours, depending on your child’s learning level.
Level Up: Switch it up by utilising solid objects like balls or books, then teaching them to match pictures, and finally, match letters.


Why These Skills Are Important

A critical factor that determines a child’s strength in reading, spelling, and writing, visual memory also helps boost awareness, mindfulness, and alertness in daily life.

#Activity: Can You Spot The Change?

You will need: Any ordinary household item your child sees everyday.
How To Play: Shift a routine item (maybe a pillow from the sofa or bed) away from its usual spot, making sure your child does not see you do this. Then, ask your child to move around the room, and identify what has changed.
Level Up: Gradually, as they get well-versed with picking up visual cues, increase the number of items being moved to 2, then 3, and so on.

#Activity: Can You Spot The Change?

You will need: Picture cards, or flashcards

Thematic flashcards from SquareBox-Square Panda’s homeschooling kit for kindergartners.

How To Play: Show your children 4 pictures in a row, then ask them to recollect the order they were shown in. This activity can also be turned into a number learning exercise, with questions like ‘What was card number 1, do you remember?’ and so on.
Level Up: You can start with pictures, and then move to letters (which don’t necessarily have to be introduced in order of A, B, C, D, and so on).


Why These Skills Are Important

‘Auditory Memory’ helps children recall what they hear, while ‘Auditory Discrimination’ helps them identify sounds and words correctly, both of which are a prerequisite to learning to read.

#Activity: Trace The Line

You will need: White paper, coloured paper, glue
How To Play: Stick the coloured paper onto the white, at the bottom, in a straight line. Ask your child to trace this with their finger. Switch the coloured paper from the bottom to the top of the white sheet, and ask your child to trace it again. You can then move the coloured strips all over the white paper, including to the left and the right.
Level Up: They can slowly move to tracing zigzag lines, or lines of more than one colour each. Slowly, you can ask them to trace over letters too.

After they trace single letters, you can move to tracing letters inside words, to introduce new vocabulary.

#Activity: Storytime

You will need: Storybooks for your early learner
How To Play: Depending on which hand your child prefers to use, sit on their right or left. Slowly, open and close the book multiple times, then while reading aloud to them, trace the sentences from left to right. Ask them to turn the page. Repeat with every book you read to them.
NEVER sit opposite them, as they cannot see how the pages are turned, etc. in this position.
Level Up: Over time, you can not only ask them questions about the story (like, ‘Where did Pan sit?’) to help them recollect, but also ask them to put the story in order, or recreate their own story, using the characters in the book.

Early readers can practice reading with the SquareTales Reading App, along with practicing multiple pre-reading activities to help develop foundational reading skills.

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Credits: Written by Sanjana Shukla (Content Writer)