By age 8, children typically begin to solidify their reading habits. And because a child’s language and literacy skills form the foundation of success in school, it is at this point in development that some readers begin to show significant gaps in ability. Luckily, no matter what reading level your child is at, you can use this time to help them thrive and succeed in both language and reading.
Logic and Inference Skills Grow
Around third grade, children can do more than just read the words in a book. They use their comprehension skills to ask if the words make sense, and use their own personal experiences to understand the books they read and the conversations around them.
As their comprehension skills develop, so do their inference skills. For example, when you say say, “Oh, I sure have a lot of grocery bags to unload,” kids this age understand that you’re indirectly asking them to help (even if they do turn back to their video games rather than grabbing a bag).
Children this age can retell stories, and form and defend ideas. Understanding of cause and effect starts to take shape, as does an awareness of fact versus opinion. You can facilitate these budding skills by asking your child ‘why’ questions along the way as they read a book and by having open-ended discussions about topics, such as how the author’s opinion comes across in the book.