Learning literacy is usually compulsory in school curriculums and for good reason. It is the key subject that all others are based around. Imagine trying to get anywhere in life without being able to read, write, speak or listen to the language!
English-based languages (in whatever form) are used continuously in everyday life at leisure and at work. Every job will require some level of literacy and certainly all higher-level occupations will require a good standard to be attained.
Ensuring your child does well in literacy is not just about academic achievements and job prospects (although these are extremely important). There have been many studies showing that being skilled in literacy can also lead to better health, self-esteem, social acceptance and integration.
When encouraging younger children to do extra literacy work, make sure there is an element of fun. Children should enjoy at least some of their learning (although don't think it has to be ALL fun) otherwise boredom will quickly creep in. Showing an interest and giving praise and even joining in on activities will please many kids. We have put together a large list of activities and resources to save you time trawling the internet for suitable challenges. The resource links we have chosen feature on many countries' core curriculums so they are largely applicable worldwide.
How to Help Your Kids with Literacy
Like everything in life, practice makes perfect. Setting aside regular short sessions (e.g. 5 times per week x 10-15 minutes) will really make a difference if you keep it up for a prolonged period. Make sessions fun to increase your child's motivation. Reading to children from a very young age is obviously important.
If you are wondering what your role would be as a carer, we would suggest it is to try your absolute hardest to motivate your child to buy into doing some extra literacy work. Obviously, if the sessions are fun and 'non-judgemental' there is more chance of them being carried out regularly. Remember, the goal is not perfection - rather it is a slowly increasing skill level over time. Children learn at their own pace and will continue if they are praised and encouraged all the way. Older children can have a mixture of games, activities and study - just make sure there is an enjoyable mix.
Literacy is probably the number one most important subject for your child to learn. School will do their best but we advise you supplement this at home. Regular reading with younger children is an obvious example of one thing you can do. We also advise encourging your child to work through our website resources. As stated above, the key is on fun and enjoyment rather than perfection and never criticise otherwise you could turn them off completely.
The kids section of the Grow-Wings website (for children ages 5 to 16) has lots of online training resources. Start here!
A great resource from New Jersey in the United States for English Language for children ages 5 to 16.
Free out-of-copyright e-books on the following topics - 'Animal', 'Children', 'Classics', 'Countries', 'Crime', 'Education', 'Fiction', 'Fine arts', 'General Works', 'Geography', 'History', 'Language and Literature', 'Law', 'Music', 'Periodicals', 'Psychology and Philosophy', 'Religion', 'Science', 'Social Sciences', 'Technology' and 'Wars'. For children of ages 6 to 18.
A complete set of english based literacy tuition online for children ages 5 to 11 with grammar quizzes, vocabulary, graphic organisers, benchmark papers and writing rubrics.
A complete set of english based literacy tuition online for children ages 11 to 14 with information given in the following sections - 'Test Prep and Assessment', 'Practice for Grammar and Writing', 'Resources for Literature, Grammar and Writing' and 'Correlations'.