Literacy ideas for Parents

Top Tips for Supporting Literacy


  • Read to your child each night. Even older children can benefit from hearing you read.
  • Let your child see you read.
  • Talk to your child about what you are reading yourself, or what you are reading with them.
  • Get them to tell you about what they are reading. Ask them questions about it. Try to get them to explain or give opinions on the book or character actions.
  • Find books that they will be interested in and want to read.
  • If a book is hard, you read it to them. If it is easy, get them to read it to you.  If it is just right, read it together.
  • Discuss the pictures and tricky words that they may not have encountered before.


  • For spelling, get them to write simple texts – help them sound out words or remind them of spelling rules.
  • Look for patterns in words – "Look, MAT has 'at' in it, just like CAT". Even older students need to look for patterns and rules to apply to help spell more complicated words.
  • Play games that use spelling – Scrabble and Hangman.
  • Help them proof-read their writing. But don't write it for them!


  • Encourage them to write simple everyday texts.
  • Encourage them to talk about what they are going to write so that they can practise it before they put pen to paper.
  • Give them different ways to present their writing – using a computer / writing with coloured pencils / on nice paper or card.

Most Important

Make it fun and encourage them in whatever you do – don't make it stressful for you or your child.

Helpful Websites

First Steps Reading Resources

Yrs K,P,1 Role Play Readers
First Steps Reading Map of Development
pdf (886.41 KB)
Yrs 1-2 Experimental Readers
First Steps Reading Map of Development
pdf (891.06 KB)
Yrs 2-4 Early Readers
First Steps Reading Map of Development
pdf (835.02 KB)
Yrs 7-9 Proficient Readers
First Step Map of Development
pdf (483.63 KB)
Yrs 4-7 Transitional Reader
First Steps Reading Map of Development
pdf (833.43 KB)