The definition of reading readiness is the point at which a child goes from not reading, to reading. The point at which a student has the skills needed to read. The process of learning to read is a milestone in a child’s development. It is as if a light bulb goes off and your child will naturally start acquiring the skills and ability to be able to read. I am going to try and walk you through how you can tell if your child is ready to read, and also give you a free Kindergarten Reading Readiness Assessment. . Once your child is ready to read, we hope you begin our learn to read program.
There are many skills that are considered reading readiness skills. All of these skills come together to help your child be able to read. Your child may be able to do some of these reading readiness skills, but not others. We offer many reading readiness activities on this site that will help you prepare your child to be ready to read.
The most important skills your little reader needs to have is called “phonemic awareness” and concept of print. Phonemic awareness is a big word that means the point at which your reader is aware that words are made up of letters and letters have sounds. Your little reader does not need to be able to do all of these things perfectly to be able to read. These are just some examples. Your little reader will…
- Understand that there are words on a page
- Understand that words are made of letters
- Understands hat letters make sounds.
- Know that a book has a front cover and a back cover
- Understands that a book has stories inside.
- Likes to listen to books and understands there is a story
- What is most important, though, is that your little reader wants to read!
Other skills that are good for your little reader to have before they begin reading include…
- Able to repeat a sentence.
- Knows letter names and sounds of upper case and lower case letters
- Recognizes the numbers 1-10
- Knows his name.
- Knows his address and telephone number
- Knows opposites
- Knows colors
- Knows Rhyming
- Can hold a pencil
- Able to trace over lines
- Able to use a scissors and cut.
- Able to retell a story.
- Able to write his name.
- Holds a book correctly.
- Follows Text from left to right.
You can find concrete examples of these reading readiness skills in our reading readiness screening tool.
How can I tell if my child is ready to read?
Test your child using our Kindergarten Reading Readiness Assessment. This reading readiness assessment will serve as a baseline on what your child knows and what your child should works on. All of the skills contained on this reading readiness test are age appropriate knowledge that is necessary in educating your “total” child. Any child that is developmentally ready to learn to read should be capable of these readiness skills.
Do not say “Yes, my child knows these skills,” use the reading readiness test and know for sure what your child does and does not know.
A child does not have to get all of these responses correct in order to be able to learn to read. This test serves as a baseline and will help you guide your child as he/she learns to read. If you see your child lacks certain reading readiness skills, you will be able to work with your child more on this skill to help him improve.
How to score the Reading Readiness Test
This reading readiness test can be used as a benchmark -if you have a beginning reader. This will help you see what your student really knows and does not know. Later you can use the reading readiness test to see how much your student has grown!
Even though a student does poorly on the reading readiness test does not mean they cannot succeed at reading. It is good to know, though, if your child understands what rhyming is -because much of phonics and reading is understanding rhyming. Until a child understands rhyming -it will be hard for the student to comprehend a word ladder, and using phonics – changing letters to change words.
Knowing the letters and sounds will help the students with reading sight words – but, a student can read sight words without knowing letter sounds. Using the Reading Patch Reading program, the student will learn phonics and letters sounds while learning sight words.
In terms of the cognitive and other skills listed in the reading readiness test, these are important skills for a student to know. If you find your student does not know these skills, you can help your child with these skills. In the Reading Patch reading videos, Mrs. Karle will teach opposites, and reading the color words. While she is teaching to color words, she will help the student identify the color in the pictures, and have the students help color the picture with the correct color. Additionally, she will help the students identify the different parts of the sentence. (For instance, she will teach the students that sentences begin with a capital letter and end with a period.)
Once your child has taken the reading readiness test, you will know the areas in which to focus your teaching. The Reading Patch Reading videos (and teachers manual) will touch on all of the concepts found in this test. The important thing is to make sure your student has confidence in what he/she is learning. If your find your student is struggling, slow down and practice for a few days. Once your child feels confident in what they are reading, they will be ready to learn more, and they will be excited about learning.
Reading Readiness Activities: Get ready to read
Once you have scored the reading readiness assessment, and you have determined which skills your child knows or needs help with, you can begin helping your child with different reading readiness activities in order to help your child get ready to read.
- Reading frequently to your little reader.
- Ask your little reader to re-tell a story.
- Singing songs and having your little reader repeat after you.
- Watch the Letter Factory – This helps teach letter names/ sounds
- Watch the Math Circus -to help teach the numbers 1-10
- Teach your reader his address and telephone number
- Point out opposites, colors and rhyming
- Practice holding a pencil
- Practice tracing over lines
- Practice using a scissors and cutting.
- Practice writing his name
- Help your reader know how to hold a book correctly.
- Point to words while reading to help teach reading from left to right.
Make sure you always read, read, read to your little reader! The more words he hears, the more words he will know! Reading to your child is one of the best things you can do help your child be ready to read. Your child will intuitively learn from watching and listening to you.
Want to grow a confident reader?
Is your child reading ready? Sign up for the free email course by clicking the image below, answering a few quick questions and signing up to receive the free email course. We will show you how to grow a confident reader one easy step at a time.
Want to try a few free reading lessons to see if your student is ready to read? You can easily teach reading using the reading patch…
Here is a list of all the Reading Lessons
About the Authors:
Madreen Karle is a master first grade reading teacher with over 30 years of classroom experience. She taught reading in a special needs and English as a Second Language classroom. After retiring she wrote a reading program to help others learn how to teach reading. She is a trusted educator and author of 5 books to help teach children to read and write. In addition to her books, she is a mentor for 3 websites that give reading teacher tips (Mrs. Karle’s Sight and Sound Reading, Mrs. Karle’s Reading Patch, and Mrs. Karle’s Handwriting Patch). Through her teaching she learned that confidence was the key to learning to read. A child who is not confident at reading does not like to read and struggles to read. Mrs. Karle created “sunshine moments” to help teach children how to grow their confidence and learn to read.
Meeghan Karle Mousaw (Madreen’s daughter) has her Master’s in Special Education. She has 7 years experience teaching children to read online. In addition, she developed a curriculum to teach children handwriting called The Handwriting Patch. With the Handwriting Patch learning is fun because children learn to draw and learn handwriting at the same time. In 2019 The Handwriting Patch curriculum became an amazon best seller the first year it was released, helping thousands of kids learn handwriting with a unique, fun method. She is mom to 6 kids, each with differently learning abilities and struggles.
The Reading Patch was established by the creators of Mrs. Karle’s Sight and Sound Reading. Together they have been featured on the NBC media outlets. Over the last 7 years in their online platform, Madreen and Meeghan have worked tirelessly with teachers, homeschoolers and parents looking to help children learn to read to become a trusted authority in teaching children to read and advocating early literacy skills. They often partner with other educational experts to deliver the most current information to the Reading Patch community.