Reading Together® supports learning across a range of languages and literacies

The Reading Together® programme supports learning across a range of languages and literacies, because parents/whānau apply the understandings and helping strategies to their interactions with children in the language(s) of the home. However, Reading Together® is mainly designed to help parents/families support children's language/literacy development in English - with a particular but not exclusive focus on reading. This is the main focus of Reading Together® because:

  • competence in English is essential for functioning fully and effectively in New Zealand and many other countries, and
  • given the complexities and irregularities of the English language, even those for whom it is a first language can struggle to develop the competencies they need to cope in educational settings and wider society.

It is even more challenging for those who speak other languages, many of which are much more regular phonetically. The Reading Together® programme helps parents of whatever language backgrounds to understand that reading is (or should be) a meaning-gaining process, that word calling is not reading, that they can help children to gain meaning by talking with them about what they are reading, linking the text with the child's experiences etc. There is a widespread (but often unrecognised) issue across language and socio-economic groups of children decoding accurately - especially when they are reading phonetically regular language - but having little idea of meaning and adults not realising that reading needs to be a meaning gaining process, not a word calling one.

Index Previous Next