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Parents know that the first years of school are critical for a child’s development into a happy and productive adult who becomes a good citizen of the world in which they live.

It is vital that children have a good start to their educational journey, but there are lots of factors affecting how successful that start is. Learning to read is one of the most important as reading is a foundational skill for success in life.

Before children can read, they need good oral language. This will allow them to progress to an understanding of phonics, development of vocabulary, fluency and comprehension. What can parents do to help? They need to talk to their children from infancy, encourage them to pronounce words correctly, not use “baby talk” and speak in full and correct sentences.

Children’s brains are not wired to read, and it isn’t an innate ability. Reading needs to be explicitly and systematically taught – it is quite a complex process! Children must hear individual sounds in words, identify them with a letter, then connect the sounds and letters together to make a word.

This is the most important task for children in Prep. After mastering words, they can begin to put them together to form sentences.

Learning to read is a little like cracking a code. There are patterns which children can be taught to recognise. Once children have cracked the code in the classroom, they then get decodable texts to take home.

Teaching children to read is a focus that is front and centre for us at MacKillop. We use evidence-based pedagogical approaches to ensure that every child has the best possible chance to master this most important of life-skills.

It’s not too late to join the MacKillop family! We are still accepting applications for Prep through to Year 10 for 2023 and beyond.

Come and join us at MacKillop and “Grow with us” as we all strive to achieve our personal best.

Find out more about us and apply online at