Basically there is no exact age for a child to be stimulated to read. But starting at the earliest age would be a good start. When your children start asking questions like, What is this?Why is that so? or saying, Read this for me! then it would be a good sign that they are ready to learn how to read. Children reading interest is strongly affected by their surroundings. Parents play important role in creating a supportive environment.
For children who have not learned to read, parents could use story telling method. It would be a good idea to use story book with pictures to tell the story. While reading it you should put your emotion in it to attract the children curiosity. This curiosity would stimulate them to do the same. If they find the story boring, then parents we need to explore for more interesting topics. Moreover, remember to arrange the books in the place easier for them to reach around their playing area.
Next stage is for the children who can read. Get them books with large text, good language and illustration. Good language will affect children language skill in communicating. One thing we need to understand is that children have short concentration span. They might suddenly decide to do other activities while reading. We do not need to get angry since about this they would have the impression that reading is boring or annoying.
Reading habit should be set up by the parents, since parents are the children role model. During the reading session, parents should do similar activity.
To avoid boredom, parents could introduce the children with various kinds of reading selection according to their age. For example books with colorful illustration, types of story or levels of difficulty. You can start by showing books with pictures but no text, then books with large text and clear illustration to books without picture and only have text. Variation would certainly increase children interest to read. When they acquire this, it would help to develop their knowledge. Beside this, parents should always be ready to give their support, like by answering their questions about things that they donÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t understand in the book.
Collection of psychology articles on children (Intisari)
Lindawati, S. Psi.
IPEKA Counseling Center