One of the best ways to teach children to read is by using flash cards. These are simply cards with letters or words on them that act as a teaching aid when parents spend time telling their children about them. It's always good to have a visual aid with you when teaching letters, as otherwise a child can lose attention very quickly, meaning nothing that a parent says to them will stick in their heads.
Scrapbooks can also help a child to learn new sounds and letters. By taking cuttings from magazines or pictures of certain objects in real life and putting them in a scrapbook with the letters of the word underneath, a child can get a much better grip of what that word is. Children can develop this scrapbook with their parents, picking out things they want to learn how to spell properly to go in their book.
Tracing letters is another way to encourage children in reading. By tracing the words from a book they will learn what letters look like and what certain sounds look like, which will help them later in school when they begin to read as a group and even write as part of their homework.
Investing in spongy letters for the bathroom can really improve a child's reading skills. Parents can challenge them to put something on the wall for them to read the next day after they've had a shower, and they will need to come up with something new every bath time. In a similar way, parents can use letter fridge magnets to encourage children to create more sentences. These can be longer and can even begin to form the beginnings of poems for someone else to finish should parents want to go that far.
Playing a game called Look, Cover, Write is also great for a child's reading skills. This involves writing a word out, cutting up the letters and then covering them up and getting a child to write the word from memory. This game can increase in difficulty, beginning with one letter getting covered up and ending with all of them being covered up while the child writes the word from memory.
Parents can have a great time teaching their children to read using any one of these techniques, but ultimately it will be a combination of these and hard work at school that gets their skills up to standard.