Is your child reading regularly?
If not, what is stopping them from choosing to read?
You might think they don’t read often because of all the electronic gadgets they use, or that they prefer sports, or that they have never been good at reading….But they are still not enough reasons to not read. Do you agree? You might believe as I do that reading regularly – anything that is well-written which includes comics and magazines – will help your child do better in life as well as at school. Definitely they learn a lot about other people and other places when they read regularly. Let us look at what you can do to change what stops them from reading.
They prefer using electronic gadgets. Limit their use! Fads in areas such as computer games, apps, and social media sites, come and go, as you may have noticed, with dismaying speed. Fluent reading is still a core skill that enriches our lives and makes them easier, and will probably continue to be a crucial skill for your children as adults. The rule ‘ work first play after’ is important for us as adults when we want to do well in life. Learning is your child’s work. Teach them to ‘read first play later’. I have seen many reluctant readers eventually prefer to read because they see reading as play. You as their parent just have to decide that reading is what you want them to do. Then you can negotiate with them, and make sure they do read as agreed. I also suggest that you regularly show interest in the story they are currently reading (I often read it ahead of them).
They prefer to be active rather than sit and read. Many of us do. However, interests and work they choose to pursue in life probably requires a competent level of reading and writing skill. Don’t you agree? I believe from my experiences as a coach that children who don’t seem to be able to sit still can be taught that skill. You might notice that your child is quite still when focused on something they find totally fascinating. I fully expect that they will learn to sit still and concentrate on their learning too. I keep their work interesting and challenging and exciting, and I use versions of games that monitor and reward their concentration such as the first up to five game. I no longer believe that a child can’t learn to sit still and concentrate on their work for a period of time.
Reading has always been difficult for them. Many children are reluctant to read, often because they found it hard to learn that skill when they were younger. Many children didn’t have enough practise at developing strong phonics skills, which is how letters relate to particular sounds, so they often had difficulty learning to both read and spell. It is very important that your child masters the letter-sound relationships (or phonics) when reading and spelling unknown words. A fun and fast way to teach your child reading and spelling skills is using The Weird Word Game.
My next post on reading will give you some easy ways to help your child read, and enjoy reading.
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