You probably already know how to sing the alphabet. Knowing the ABCs is the first step toward being a strong reader. Learning the alphabet includes knowing each letter, what it looks like, and the sounds it makes. Teachers may call these studies “phonics.” You can learn the ABCs by practicing your writing with worksheets. Games and activities are fun ways to build these skills, too. Some games are electronic, and you can play them on a computer or mobile device like a tablet. You might play other activities with paper and pencil or by printing out a game board from your computer.
As you begin to learn how to read, you will find some of the same words repeated often in the books you read. Learning these words can help you become a better and faster reader. Teachers call these words “sight words” because students should learn how to read these words quickly when they see them. Examples of these sight words include words such as “and,” “here,” and “said.” Playing games and doing activities that teach sight words can be a fun way to learn these important words.
Knowing how to spell words is an important part of becoming a good reader and writer. Letters go together in many different patterns to make up words. Students need to learn the common letter patterns for spelling as they learn about reading and writing. Teachers sometimes call this learning “decoding” because it’s a lot like breaking a special code to read hidden messages. Once you know the code, you have the information you need to read and write words correctly. By playing spelling games, you can practice your decoding skills to be a better speller.
You might be able to read the words in a book easily, but you also need to understand what you are reading. This understanding is known as “reading comprehension.” Students often need to practice reading comprehension to learn how to read and understand words on a page or in a book. Reading comprehension is also important for learning other subjects, such as science or social studies. When you read stories or information in a textbook, your reading comprehension skills will help you digest what you read to learn about these topics. You can practice and develop better reading comprehension skills by playing games, engaging in activities, and doing printed worksheets.
Learning doesn’t have to be just sitting at a desk with books and working on worksheets. You can learn lots of important skills while you have fun, too. Some games are designed for just one person, and other games let you play with friends to learn together. Playing reading and phonics games helps you learn letters and their sounds, which is the first step toward reading. Once you understand these first lessons, you’ll be ready to move on to decoding words, learning sight words, and working on understanding what you read. Mobile reading and phonics games might help you discover how much you enjoy reading, too.