Start teaching your child the basics of letter sounds at an early age at home, so they will be able to pick up reading very easily. Many parents wait until the child starts school to teach reading, but really young kids starting at around age 2, can pick up and recognize letter sounds so they will be able to easily sound out words and begin reading earlier.
What you will need:
* Patience and time with the child
* Flash cards, letter puzzles, or fun, simple books.
What to do:
*At this young age, you won't know if the child learns best by visual learning, auditory learning, or tactile (touch) learning. You will want to use all three of these methods when teaching your child. Here are a few fun ways to teach them the letter sounds that will be the base for reading and sounding out words.
*Try using a cookie sheet or a plastic placemat to put dry coffee grounds, sand, sugar, or flour on. Then, sit with your child and help them to draw out each letter in the substance you chose. While they are feeling the letter with their fingers, and watching the letter with their eyes, you will need to say the letter and the sound that the letter makes. Don't just say the letter, but make sure to say and have the child repeat the sound that the letter makes. It may also be helpful to have alphabet flashcards handy so that you can refer to them as well. These usually have a picture, and this may help your child recognize and associate the letter easier.
*Another method similar to this is to use a plastic bag filled with children's paint. Make sure it is sealed well. Lay this flat and use it the same way by guiding your child's finger to draw out each letter in the paint. Make sure you say the letter and the sound the letter makes while drawing the letter in the paint.
*Now, just get out your easy children's books and sit down with your child to sound out a few words. Make it fun and really praise them for their efforts. There are also fun puzzles that have the alphabet on them. Use these as well to mix things up and keep it fun and fresh for your child.