Parents concerned whether their child is understanding what they’re reading can help the little one develop better reading comprehension skills with this simple little hide and seek game.

After reading a short passage of a book, such as:

With a sigh, the princess knew going back to sleep was not going to be an option even though the daylight was barely filtering through for morning. Looking out the window, she watched as a school of yellow jacks swam by her window. They seemed to be glowing a particularly bright shade of yellow this morning. Their fins seemed a little too blue. That somehow made the princess feel concerned. Something seemed to be wrong somehow.

With a few flips of her fins, she rose gracefully from her bed and deposited her pet just on the other side of her doorway.

Here’s the hide and seek portion. Ask your child questions about the text and ask them to find the parts of the text that let them know that. Questions you could ask include:

  • Where do you think the princess lives?
  • Or Where is the sandcastle?
  • (search for clues that tell you the princess’s castle is underwater)
  • Is there something wrong in the princess’s world?
  • What tells you there is something wrong?
  • (search for clues that things are unusual in the princess’s world)

You can dig into deeper reading skills by asking deeper questions, forcing deductive thought.

  • Solve the mystery of what is a Yellow Jack from what you see in the story.
  • What do you think the princess looks like from what you read?

Or have a little more fun with it by moving into creative time depending on your child’s natural inclinations.

  • Draw a picture of the princess’s sandcastle.
  • Color some yellow jacks.
  • What kind of pet do you think the princess would have based on where she lives?
  • What kind of trouble do you think might be happening?
  • Or do some research to learn more about yellow jacks and where they can be found.

You can engage in this kind of discussion with your child with any of their favorite texts. If you happen to play with this one and (with your permission) your child cares to share or wishes to interact with the author, you’re welcome to send responses to [email protected]

Hide and Seek Reading Exercise