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Originally Broadcasted

Date: Thursday 22nd April, 2021

“My Baby Can Read!”


The ability to read and comprehend is highly correlated with academic success. Children who enjoy reading have a huge school advantage over children who find books unenjoyable or tedious. The foundations of the reading brain is built over the first six years of life with most acquiring the ability to read between five to six years of age, some as early as four.
Is using flash cards the key to giving your toddler a headstart to reading? Is learning of phonics essential? Does having letter reversals mean the child has dyslexia? Join this webinar to separate the facts and myths in developing the best reading foundations in your child. Take home the latest proven science-based strategies to nurture your child into a capable reader.
Here are the 3 main takeaways:
1. Speaking is a natural human task but reading is actually an invented task. Reading requires many different brain systems to work in sync seamlessly to allow us to draw meaning from text across a page. Some children have robust brain pathways for reading and are able to derive great pleasure from this activity. Other children struggle when brain pathways that support reading are under-developed.

2. Reading is so much more than just mastering phonics. During the early years of 0-3, parents and educators should focus on helping children understand and enjoy the stories in books, tuning in to the sounds in words and sentences, and encouraging child-directed conversations during reading activities. Phonics, or the “mechanics” of reading, which involves letter-sound association or actual decoding of words would be the focus after 3 years and should ideally be built upon a foundation of strong oral language.

3. The 6 “must-haves” for solid reading skills, typically developed in chronological order:

  • Oral language experience
  • Vocabulary
  • Phonological awareness
  • Letter-sound association or Phonics
  • Fluency
  • Comprehension

With more than 20 years’ experience in brain fitness training, Cheryl is an accomplished paediatric physiotherapist, who is also the founder of BrainFit, an entity that specialises in scientific brain fitness training. Cheryl holds a Master Degree in Physiotherapy Studies (Paediatrics) from the University of Queensland, Australia. She was awarded a full scholarship from KK Hospital and was also the overall coordinator for paediatric neurology physiotherapy there. She has lectured in Nanyang Polytechnic and is a much sought-after speaker, including at events organised by MediaCorp-SMART Parents, the Child Guidance Clinic and schools. She is a frequent invited guest on Parenting Made Easy Radio 93.8, where she shares her expertise on brain fitness to help parents raise smarter and more resilient children. Cheryl is also an author and a mother to two young girls.