10 ways to help your child become a reading success | Celebrate Dr. Seuss in Federal Way

Educational experts agree that the more children read, the more they’ll enjoy reading, and the better readers they’re likely to become.

Many research studies have found that children who are read to, or read on their own at home, do better in school. Sylvan offers the following reading tips for parents searching for ways to engage children in the wonderful world of reading.

1. Read with your child. Consider reading one book together every month aloud. Take turns reading pages, chapters or major sections of the book. It will help develop your child’s reading skills, and create a basis for ongoing dialogue and discussion. Many of Dr. Seuss’s books are excellent platforms for discussion. You can find Dr. Seuss books written at a variety of different grade or age levels.

2. Read together regularly. Parents should spend an average of an hour a week — or 10 to 15 minutes a day — reading with young readers. It establishes reading as a regular, daily habit. When listening to your child read, find that fine line between picking apart their mistakes and just listening, but correcting for errors that would affect comprehension.  Some of the more unique words in a Dr. Seuss book can even lead to extra practice in phonics or sounding out words.

3. Encourage your child to build his or her own library. Help your child start his or her own library by including a visit to a local bookstore in your weekly or monthly shopping outings.

4. Search for reading activities on the Internet. Visit online reading programs like, a free online motivational reading program. Students choose books from more than 7,500 titles, take short comprehension quizzes, and redeem their points for small prizes.

5. Provide different kinds of general interest magazines for your child. Explore news events in much greater detail through words and vivid photographs. Read an article together, and help your child with difficult words or abstract concepts.

6. Visit your local library and introduce your child to the children’s librarian. He or she can suggest book titles, guide your child through research projects, and keep you informed about any special upcoming reading events at the library or elsewhere in the community.

7. Get a riddle book at the library or bookstore. Laughing together at clever jokes and riddles can make a Saturday trip to soccer or hockey practice more enjoyable and memorable.

8. Create a vocabulary game. Compile a word list and make a vocabulary game on index cards. Whether your child is learning how to read or is preparing for high school exams, learning new words is important.

9. Make a book. Encourage your children to write original stories and illustrate them with their own drawings. You can even find inexpensive sites online where you can have a book hardbound.

10. Learn new words on the road. Every journey, trip or vacation, regardless of the distance, introduces new ideas and objectives to your child and can enlarge his or her vocabulary.

To get students excited about reading and encourage more adults to spend time reading with children, Sylvan is partnering with the National Education Association (NEA) to celebrate the 16th anniversary of the NEA’s Read Across America and the 108th birthday of Dr. Seuss on March 2. Sylvan educators will join with teachers, students and parents to encourage a love of reading in our local community.

Let’s join together on March 2, and every day thereafter, to ensure that Federal Way’s children and their families celebrate lifelong reading success.


Morgan Griffith is the Center Director at the Federal Way Sylvan Learning Center, 32717 1st Ave. S. Call (253) 838-0507 or visit


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