The Five Steps to Reading Success: A Guide to Reading Pyramid

The Five Steps to Reading Success: A Guide to Reading Pyramid

Learning to read is a magical journey for children and their families. It's a time of exciting discoveries and growing independence. However, parents may be surprised to find that reading isn't automatic. Regardless of background, all children need support to develop strong reading skills. 

Today's parents face a new reality: some children aren't getting the necessary reading foundation in school. This may be a concern you share for your own child. The good news? You, as a parent, play a vital role in this process. Here's how you can be your child's reading champion: 

  • Surround your child with high-quality books and engaging materials that spark their interest. 
  • Establish a daily reading routine, even if it's just for a few minutes. Let your child see you reading too. 
  • Create a rich language environment by having conversations, singing songs, and pointing out letters and words throughout the day. 
  • Discuss your child's progress with educators and follow their recommendations.  

Reading development can be broken down into five key areas. By understanding these areas, you can help your child not only succeed in reading but also develop a lifelong love of books.  

What is the Reading Pyramid? 

Just like any complex skill, reading can be broken down into smaller, essential building blocks. These building blocks are often depicted in a helpful model called the "Reading Pyramid." 

Level 1: Phonemic Awareness 

For young learners, the adventure of reading starts with the tiniest building blocks phonemes. These are the individual sounds that make up words, like the /k/ sound in "cat" or the /b/ sound in "bat." As your child starts to recognize these sounds, they'll build a crucial skill called phonemic awareness. This allows them to play with sounds, group words that sound alike, and eventually, blend those sounds together to form whole words. 

Level 2: Phonics/Decoding 

With phonemic awareness mastered, your child is ready to unlock the code of written language. Phonics takes your child on to the next exciting step. It shows them how the sounds they already know in spoken language (like the /b/ in "ball") connect to the letters (b) and letter combinations (like "sh" in "shop") we see on the page. This magical connection between sound and symbol is phonics, and it's the key to unlocking new words with confidence. 

Level 3: Fluency 

The more your child masters sounds, letters, and new words, the smoother their reading becomes, this is called fluency. Imagine reading like riding a bike – at first, it takes a lot of focus, but soon, it becomes smooth and automatic. Fluent readers recognize words quickly and understand their meaning. However, if reading feels choppy or slow, it can make reading less enjoyable. Especially in upper elementary grades, where fluency is crucial, struggling readers might start to dislike reading altogether. Let's help them develop this skill so they can enjoy the amazing world of books 

Level 4: Vocabulary 

Your kids will encounter fascinating new words everywhere they turn. Some will be like friendly faces they recognize instantly - these are 'sight words' they see often on signs, books, and around the house. Others will be like exciting discoveries they hear for the first time in conversations, stories, or songs - these are 'spoken words.' 

As their decoding skills get stronger and their word collection grows, deciphering brand-new words will become a fun and natural part of their adventure. Every new word they learn adds another brick to the foundation of their understanding, making them feel empowered and eager to discover more. The world will become a richer, more vibrant place as they unlock the secrets hidden within language. 

The Vocabulary game from The Fidget Game can help your kids develop a diverse vocabulary at a young age. It can benefit children in various aspects of their lives, including communication, academic performance, confidence, reading comprehension, and critical thinking skills. 

Level 5: Comprehension 

Comprehension is the ability to understand what you're reading. It's about making connections between the words on the page, your own background knowledge, and the bigger picture of the story. As your child develops stronger reading skills, they'll learn to ask questions, make predictions, and draw conclusions from the text. Here are some ways to help your child become a comprehension champion: 

  • Stop and Discuss: While reading together, pause to ask questions like "What do you think will happen next?" or "How do you think the character feels?" Discuss the story's setting, plot, and characters. 
  • Connect to Real Life: Help your child relate the story to their own experiences. Ask questions like "Have you ever felt the same way as the character?" or "Can you think of a time something similar happened to you?" 
  • Go Beyond the Text: Encourage your child to predict what might happen next, imagine different endings, or even draw pictures to illustrate the story. 

Want More? 

We believe that every parent holds the power to be the most engaging, effective teacher their child will ever have. is here to help you unlock that power. Get your hands on our multisensory research-based games to improve the necessary reading skills today! 

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