Types of Reading Skills

  • How To Help Your Child Become A Better Reader

    Reading is the foundation for success. When children develop reading habit early in their lives, they are more likely to be successful in school, work, and life in general.

    That said, learning to read isn’t always an easy task for children, and that’s why it is crucial that you, as a parent, work with your child and encourage the habit of reading early in their lives. Spend time with them to ensure that your child develops the following essential reading skills.

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8 Essential Skills for Reading Success

The different types of reading skills are:

  • Decoding

    Decoding is the ability to sound out words children have heard before but haven’t seen written out. This is a vital step in the reading process as it forms the foundation for other reading skills.

    Decoding heavily relies on an early language skill called phonemic awareness. Phonemic awareness is the ability to hear and manipulate different sounds into words. Children develop this awareness when learning about syllables, words, and sounds (phonemes).

  • Phonics

    Phonics is the ability to recognize the connection between sounds and letters they make. This process of mapping the sounds in words to written words is a very important reading skill. Children first decode the words into sounds and encode the sounds into words as they write and spell.

  • Vocabulary

    A good vocabulary is a fundamental part of academic success. This reading skill is necessary to understand the meaning of words, their definitions, and their context.

    The more words a child knows, the better they are at reading and understanding the texts they read.

  • Fluency

    Fluency is the ability to read aloud with understanding, accuracy, and speed. It is a skill needed for good reading comprehension. Kids fluent in reading know how to read smoothly, at a good pace, using proper tone, and without making too many errors.

  • Sentence Construction & Cohesion

    Sentence construction and cohesion may seem like a writing skill, but it’s an essential reading skill. Connecting ideas between and within the sentences are called cohesion, and these skills are essential for reading comprehension.

  • Reading Comprehension

    Understand the meaning of the text – both in storybooks and information books. In fiction books, children imagine the characters and share an emotional and adventurous journey with them. In non-fiction books, children gain new information, which deepens their understanding of new topics and concepts. Reading comprehension is a complex skill that requires time and practice to develop fully.

  • Reasoning & Background Knowledge

    This skill helps the child use the background knowledge to make inferences and draw conclusions. Most readers can relate what they have read to what they know. They can also read between the lines to pull out the information when it’s not literally spelled out in the text.

  • Working Memory & Attention

    These skills are closely related but different and are part of a group of abilities known as executive function. When children read, attention helps them absorb the information from the text, and working memory allows them to retain that information. This helps them gain meaning and build knowledge from what they read.

4 Different Types of Reading Techniques

  • Skimming

    Skimming, sometimes referred to as gist reading, means going through the text to grasp the main idea. Here, the reader doesn’t pronounce each and every word of the text but focuses their attention on the main theme or the core of the text. Examples of skimming are reading magazines or newspapers and searching for a name in a telephone directory.

  • Scanning

    Here, the reader quickly scuttles across sentences to get to a particular piece of information. Scanning involves the technique of rejecting or ignoring irrelevant information from the text to locate a specific piece of information.

  • Intensive Reading

    Intensive reading is far more time-consuming than skimming and scanning as it needs the reader’s attention to detail. It involves close reading that aims at the accuracy of comprehension. Here, the reader has to understand the meaning of each and every word.

  • Extensive reading

    Extensive reading lays more emphasis on fluency and less on accuracy. It usually involves reading for pleasure and is more of an out-of-classroom activity. It is highly unlikely for readers to take up the extensive reading of text they do not like.

4 Common Reading Problems

  • Issues with decoding

    Beginner readers may struggle when they meet new or unfamiliar terms, but typically decoding becomes easier with repeated practice of reading the text out loud. If a child continues to struggle, there may be an underlying difficulty or a physical impairment that does not allow them to hear the sounds or see the letters.

  • Poor comprehension of reading skills

    Some children can read like a pro but may not be able to tell you what they have read. This indicates a problem of incomprehension. These children may find the same difficulty when their teachers or parents read aloud.

  • Speed

    The more children read, the more they expand their vocabulary. They begin to recognize more words by sight, enabling them to read faster. If speed is the issue with your child, slow processing of information could be the problem. Since reading is a cognitively demanding task, it involves holding information in the mind while continuously processing the text. This can exhaust the children with slow processing. Such children may require extra time to complete tasks that require extensive reading.

  • Mixed reading difficulties

    Mixed reading problems in kids include decoding words and difficulty with comprehension. They have challenges when it comes to reading words, retaining information, and understanding the text. These problems could be due to a reading disorder. Although some kids learn slower than others, if you notice any difficulty that affects your child’s daily life, it should be evaluated by a professional.

  • How to Improve Reading Skills of a Child

    Whatever reading problems your child is going through, there are always ways to help. Here are some ways you can help your child overcome their reading problems:

    • Take note of what you are seeing when your child is reading. When you observe your child, you may start seeing patterns. Talk with your child’s teacher or caregiver to find out if they have observed something similar.
    • Work on building reading skills at home. Teach sight words for fluency and quick recall. Use flashcards, point out words on the hoardings, brand names, or store names
    • Always remember that if your child is struggling with any skill, it can make them feel inferior, and that can take a toll on their self-esteem. As your child works on their reading skills, make sure you praise their efforts and celebrate their small wins.
    • Choose books that contain detailed visual illustrations to help your child connect the text with the scene.
    • Get your child enrolled in online classes. PlanetSpark’s programme uses the essential skills for reading success to unlock all aspects of reading focusing on phonics, comprehension, vocabulary, phonemic awareness, and reading for meaning.