Don't bore your creative child with inactivity.
When you have a right-brained child, getting him to sit down and focus is one thing -- teaching him to read is a different story altogether. Right-brained kids are traditionally more creative, visual and artistic, which means your explanations and flash cards might be met with a confused look, and then begging to go do something more fun. If you're hoping to set your preschooler on the right reading track, it's time to get visual to help concepts really sink into that right brain.
1Select books that have plenty of pictures and interaction to help keep your right-brained cutie engaged. Right-brained kids are visual, so if the book doesn't have a ton of brightly-colored pictures and plot action, you might lose interest in favor of playing superheroes or coloring. Choose books carefully and look for short, colorful stories that will keep your little one glued.
2Encourage your child to look at the illustrations when reading. While left-brained kids might be more focused on the words, right-brained kids need to see pictures. Checking out the illustrations can sometimes help your child remember words while reading. And, since your preschooler is still young, you can even make up your own stories based on the pictures until reading becomes more natural.
3Use hands-on activities to reiterate reading concepts. Telling your right-brained child the difference between long and short vowels probably isn't going to get a huge reaction. Instead, printing off coloring activities, using paint to trace letters or writing short words with pictures will help all of your hard work to sink in, since right-brained kids need to see and do, not just hear.
4Include activities as part of your reading time. Right-brained kids like to be active, which is why sitting on the couch with a book might be your idea of a nice afternoon, but not your child's. If you read a book about cookies, bake some together and talk about the story to enhance reading comprehension. Or, turn a rhyming book into a silly song. That way, "reading time" isn't synonymous with "sit still and be quiet time."
5Utilize flash cards, but only if they have pictures. Flash cards can help your little one grasp basic words. Don't worry, the pictures won't help him cheat, but will keep his eyes locked on the cards so you can get through your reading lesson. Or, try covering up the pictures -- your little one can try his hand at reading the words and you can then reveal the picture for a surprise.
6Keep your reading lessons short and sweet. You want reading to be an enjoyable experience for your little wiggle worm and drawing it out can make him favor his video games after long sessions with a book. If your little bookworm is tackling a tome independently, stick close by; right-brained kids are social and don't love being alone. Make reading a mom-and-kid ritual so he ends up associating good memories with the process of reading.
- Focus on phonics, sounds and short words for now. Your little one will learn more complex reading concepts in preschool and kindergarten, so you can build foundational reading skills at home, even if your child doesn't head off to school as the next child prodigy.