It is a fascinating two-way relationship.
First of all, be selective about what your child is reading. Is the reading material stimulating your child’s imagination and helping him or her see the world in a new way? Does it bring a sense of comfort to an issue he or she is personally struggling with? Or perhaps it brings a deeper level of understanding about a topic he or she loves. For this, classic children’s books come to mind.
Whether it is a fairy tale that has stood the test of time, or a newspaper article that informs them of current events, what your child reads matters. Reading comprehension and knowledge are interconnected.
How reading comprehension is intertwined with knowledge
Reading has the power to broaden a child’s knowledge of the world. That knowledge will then provide context to any new material that your child reads, helping his or her mind make better and accurate inferences to the content. Just as the variety of texts matters, so too does your child’s comprehension of those texts.
The British Cohort Study revealed that reading for pleasure improves children’s brains. The study confirmed that frequent reading boosts intellectual progress in the areas of vocabulary, spelling and even mathematics; possible additional benefits include helping children process and absorb new ideas and concepts in school and beyond.
Think of this fantastic cycle in which any child who enjoys reading will likely thirst to read more. By doing so, they grow their knowledge bank, and that growing knowledge will feed their reading comprehension abilities.
Where an enrichment class comes into play
To widen their children’s knowledge and strengthen their reading comprehension skills, some parents look toward various types of enrichment classes beyond the school curriculum.
A speech and drama enrichment class might not seem like an obvious choice directly related to reading comprehension improvement, but it boosts self-expression, vocabulary and confidence – all of which overlap with the skillsets required of a strong communicator, which, after all, is the root of all reading and writing.
As your child practices reading richly with expression, he or she will become more engaged with the material, connect with the characters, comprehend the text on a deeper level, and grow bolder when speaking in groups.