Interactive Reading Activities for Kids

If you've ever read something and realized you have no idea what you just read, then you've experienced what many kids experience every time they read. This problem sometimes occurs for adults who are reading something very technical or who are distracted while they read. Many kids, however, are fluent readers but have poor comprehension skills. You can help your child improve his or her reading comprehension by promoting interactive reading activities at home.

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How Can I Promote Interactive Reading?

Interactive reading means actively thinking about the meaning behind the words. By teaching your child to ask questions and activate background knowledge before beginning a text, you are promoting interactive reading. For example, if your son or daughter is reading a story about a stormy day, have him or her think about personal experiences with stormy days. Ask him or her to visualize what it might look like and predict what might happen in the text. Additionally, you can find free interactive games online or you may want to try some of the following exercises and activities to help get your child excited and engaged with reading outside of the classroom.

Three Interactive Reading Activities

Book Club

When you're trying to encourage reading for class or for pleasure, be sure to model good reading habits for your child. An easy but fun way to do this is creating a family book club. The purpose of this activity is not to create a required meeting that your son or daughter will want to skip, but to develop a fun and interactive environment that your child will look forward to each time.

In order to promote this idea, make the book club official by determining a set meeting schedule. It could be once a week or more often as time allows. Instead of requiring full texts, set small goals up front that can grow as your child becomes more comfortable. For example, for the first week, read the first chapter and come up with some discussion questions that can be covered during the meeting.

Prior to engaging in the scheduled reading, establish a reward that will come once the goal is complete. It can be a new game, a trip to the park or something else that your child will look forward to working toward. Additionally, you may allow your son or daughter to come up with a name for the club just for fun.

Story Collage

Creating a collage based on a text can be a fun way to encourage active reading and comprehension skills. Once your son or daughter has completed a text of his or her choosing, provide a stack of magazines, poster board and paste to start the activity. For this comprehension exercise, your child will browse magazines to find images and phrases that represent the story, and he or she will place the cut outs on the poster board in whatever arrangement makes the most sense. Your child may choose to put the images and words in chronological order, or they can be placed on the board like random patchwork.

Open Discussion

While reading, kids should stop every few pages to think about what they've just covered. Kids should be able to summarize the plot or storyline of each section in a couple of sentences. In order to promote interactive reading, sit down with your child after he or she has read a chapter or two and ask open-ended questions about the text. Let your son or daughter share ideas about the author's main point and ask you any questions he or she might have about the story. This will encourage open communication and reading comprehension practice in a setting that is more comfortable than the classroom.

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