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Many parents find it hard to get their children to read for the Selective Schools exams. Many of these children are usually not interested in reading difficult books with complex subjects, making them fail their reading comprehension tests. This article will focus on how to approach reading, with a special focus on important reading lists which will make reading more interesting and challenging for kids. Your child’s performance in reading comprehension depends on the reading approach that they are exposed to. To understand these approaches, we will discuss some of the common misconceptions that most people have about reading.

1.Reading books will improve English

Reading books will improve English You have probably heard teachers saying that reading improves comprehension ability or improve your English. This is not entirely true. Reading is only great if you read properly and understand the message in the text. Your child’s English might improve if they are reading challenging texts and understanding every single word. While reading, children should find the texts engaging making them excited and curious to read more. This is likely to improve their English.

Most parents just borrow or buy books for their kids to read without knowing if the book is of importance. Most kids are not curious, so they choose the books they like while ignoring the difficult ones, and so they do not improve their vocabulary. This is why reading alone cannot increase a child’s reading or writing ability. Many kids read a lot yet their efforts do not reflect on the test scores. With this poor reading habit, it is usually not easy to quantify how much they have internalized, whether they have understood the author’s intention, and if they have interpreted the text correctly.

Reading requires thinking, engagement and understanding through searching for hard words in the dictionary or the internet. If you don’t see your child searching up words in the dictionary or the internet, their reading materials could be simple and not challenging. They might not also be reading properly, or even not reading at all. Parents should read the books that their kids are reading and ask them questions about the details of the texts.

2. Reading makes you write better

Your child can only write better if they are reading properly and memorizing what they have read. Unfortunately, most kids just read and understand without memorizing. If your child is not copying and adopting the author’s style of language, memorizing the texts, and writing down important phrases, they might not improve their writing skills. Kids who can read for hours and immerse themselves in the language have very strong foundations in English and writing from a very young age. If you leave your children to read without guiding them on the details, they are likely to develop poor reading skills.

Reading habit

Most kids like reading while sited on their beds. This is a poor reading habit. They should sit on a desk and read properly. Some parents have problems with kids who only want to read easy and amusing books and not complex ones. As a parent, you should not force your kid to read something they don’t want because they will not understand anything. Kids love reading things they are interested in and passionate about. You need to help them develop an appreciation and interest in what they read. Find a topic that your child is interested in and encourage them to read more along those lines, because. This will ignite their reading interests. Every child has a role model. They might have a celebrity role model or a humanitarian role model. Reading biographies and autobiographies of such people might interest them. They can also read the most iconic books of all time while reading through spark notes guides.

Another way of improving the kids’ reading culture is to introduce them to Wikipedia. Let them do research projects on important topics like climate change or migration. This will help them to apply what they have read. A good reading material should make the children write.

Whether they are reading non-fiction materials through books or the computer, it doesn’t really matter. In fact, kids need to read non-fiction on a computer and apply them through a research task. Lastly, make sure you link the reading to the writing to improve their vocabulary.

Reading lists for Selective Preparation

The new Cambridge tests are very much non-fiction-based. So, to get kids curious and interested in reading nonfiction, the first reading list to introduce them to are autobiographical and social psychology books like Blink by Malcolm Gladwell. These books contain a collection of anecdotes and stories which are very interesting. To get them started, give your kid a small online excerpt the book. The excerpt will encourage your kid to develop interests in a wide range of topics. Later, you can introduce them to a wide reading list that will make them interested in reading more non-fiction work. Biographies are important because they relate to historical events. You can check on Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell and The Tipping Point by Michael Gladwell. After reading the events of these people’s lives, the kid will be interested in researching history.

In the fiction books, the kids can read the Harry Porter Series or kill a Mockingbird by Haper Lee. These books are famous and iconic as they deal with recurring themes. To kill a Mockingbird by Haper Lee for example, talks about racism and discrimination. To get your kids to understand these books, ask them to read the spark notes version. This website allows kids to learn through the storyline, summary analysis, and reviews. These books are good for kids targeting scholarships especially.

How to balance reading time

Children can improve their comprehension skills if they read more books. Reading gives the kids that extra edge in writing and when interpreting difficult passages.


Comprehension skills will not only get them into selective schools like James Ruse but will also them scholarships to top private schools like Sydney Grammar or Abbotsleigh.

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