How to Teach your Child to Read

When I first became a parent I was very relaxed about education. My first born didn’t go to nursery and I was happy with that and didn’t mind having her at home with me. This did mean that she was slightly behind when she started school and that is when the panic kicked in. The first thing I decided to do was to teach her how to read. When I successfully taught my daughter how to read I then started to wonder what else I could go on to teach her, and that is when my love of teaching started. I also learnt then that with the right tools, teaching becomes much much easier.

You can teach your child to read in a random way, but I find that this would take a lot longer than if you were to do it systematically. Which is why I recommend this book:

  • The Reading Lesson: Teach your child to read in 20 easy lessons (by Micheal Levin and Charan Langton).


One or two pages a day is all you need to do.

This book uses American English, so I had to skip a few words in it, being from England.

I’m sure there are other equally good books out there that you can use. The main point that I am trying to get across is that it is important to use a systematic approach.

I am also a huge fan of flash cards. Unfortunately the English language includes a lot of ‘sight words’ where you just cannot learn to sound them out. For these words I recommend using:

  • Sight word flash cards


You can either buy these or make them yourselves.

Sometimes teaching can be as easy as putting on a video for your child to watch, and there are some great ones on you-tube. I recommend:

  • Jollyphonics Jolly songs

I guarantee that not only your child but you will be singing along to them in no time, they are that catchy.

If you would like to get your child to start writing too then I would recommend the Jolly Phonics workbooks:


Do not worry if your child cannot read the words themselves, learning how to blend words together is a very tricky skill to learn. Just keep teaching them the sounds, and finally when they do learn how to blend the words together they will have learnt all the sounds they need.


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Mothers are from Venus, Sons are from Mars

I do not pretend to understand my son. He is 9 years old and I just don’t get him. I have two daughters and we have very different personalities, but they still make sense to me.

There is a very special bond between mother and son, and I understand that now. I see it in my mother and how she interacts with my brothers. In her eyes they can do no wrong. They still joke and have fun together whereas I have a more serious grown up relationship with my mum, where we talk. She is my go to for advice on anything, but it is a different relationship that she has with her sons and I can see that now. I don’t necessarily understand it.

I only have the one son and he is the baby of the family. I know this will affect the way we treat him and how his personality develops. Although I accept all this I still think the fact that he is a boy means that we are on different wavelengths.

I can no longer blame my mother-in-law for my husbands faults. I understand that now too.

Perhaps boys and girls need to be parented differently? Or is it that we subconsciously treat our children differently based on gender?

I think I understand now why they say that boys need male role models in their lives. I will do my best to parent my son and teach him the difference between right and wrong, but I will be doing this blindly, without really understanding how his mind works. We are fundamentally too different.