ESOL Parents

Language Translator

Tips and information for ESOL parents


Reading at home

Make reading fun

Reading at home needs to be fun and easy – something you both look forward to, a time for laughter and talk.

  • find a comfortable, quiet place away from the TV for the 2 of you to cosy up and read for 10-15 minutes
  • if you or your child start to feel stressed, take a break and read the rest of the story aloud yourself – keep it fun
  • make some puppets – old socks, cardboard tubes, cut-outs on sticks – that you and your child can use to act out the story you have read. Or dress up and make it into a play
  • play card games (you can make the cards yourself)
  • read songs, waiata, poems and rhymes - sing them together, too.

Here's a tip - when they are reading, your child will still be coming across words they don’t know. When this happens, you could remind them to think about what they already know to do when they get stuck. If that doesn’t help you might ask

"What word would make sense that starts like that?" or "What do you know about that word that might help?"

If they still can’t work it out – tell them and praise their efforts.

Have fun

In the car or a walk-
  • say the numbers on letterboxes
  • skip count in 2's, 5's 10's
  • play 'I Spy'
  • choose a letter of the alphabet and say the sound it makes and a word that starts with it
At home-
  • talk about the time on the clock
  • cook/bake together- cut in half, add, measure, weigh
  • talk about- in, on, beside, in front, behind, under, between


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