7 yo not really reading and won't practice of his own accord... - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 21 Old 01-27-2011, 02:17 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ok I admit this is disproportionately driving me up the wall today

 

He basically says he sees no point in reading and that if it were up to him he'd do all his learning through the tv or computer. This is probably the single comment that puts me closest to sending him to school. 

 

He thinks reading is too slow and too dull.

 

He doesn't spend hours in front of a screen. II suppose he has free-ish access to both tv and computers but subject to negotiation, if that makes sense. He doesn't get to watch 17 hours straight, nor, if he asks to watch and we have nothing else planned and he hasn't spent hours in front of the screen already, do I say no. He goes days, weeks or months without watching, then he might watch 3 hours straight if he gets into, say, a series on science. So I don't feel its either forbidden fruit or used to excess-he could certainly negotiate for more than he has and I would be comfortable with that. What he really likes doing is playing various small doll games with his sisters, and that would be his preferred way to spend a day. 

 

The issue, I think, is that he is basically not very good at reading yet. And tbh he has the skills in place, he can sound out words, he knows words, but he won't read of his own accord, and its like pulling teeth to get him to practice with me. He does about 20 minutes a day practice, and that is probably about 16 lines of a Dr Seuss science book (told you it was like pulling teeth). I think he is not becoming fluent because he just will not practice. He is at the stage where he needs to read lots, to do lots of asking me what a word means, and he just won't do this.

 

I'm trying not to show it, but its utterly infuriating me. I'm NOT saying "for goodness sake, just make an effort". But it does irritate me. He needs to start trying to read or else he's never going to get it, surely. I've been biting my tongue on this for SO LONG thinking, ok, he'll start reading of his own accord, and he just isn't. 

 

I've done everything I think is obvious. I've bought him really interesting books. I've made reading part of everyday life. He has opportunities to write and email people. We read to him. He spends hours listening to audio books. Dp and I are always reading, there is no chance he's gained from us that reading is not a worthwhile thing to do.

 

His vocabulary is ridiculously ahead of his reading age, and I don't think he's behind generally-in maths and science I'm pretty sure he's ahead.

 

Part of me thinks I've made it too easy for him to manage without reading. We read to him. He has free access to audiobooks. There aren't that many times in his life where he needs to read something and can't. On the other hand it would feel a little mean to refuse to read, say, a recipe to him because he needed to practice-I encourage him to read this stuff himself, of course, but at the end of the day I wouldn't refuse to let him cook supper because he couldn't read a recipe.

 

Is this a stage? Do they realise the value of reading? it does not help that he has several friends who are younger and fluent readers

 


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#2 of 21 Old 01-27-2011, 04:17 PM
 
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I wish I could answer this question for you.  We've only been homeschooling a few months, so take my advice with a grain of salt!  :)

 

My son is 6 1/2, and went to public school for K and half of 1st grade.  They taught him to read at school and I think he is a very good reader, but I have to really push him through his daily reading practice.  I really surprises me because we read all the time, I have always read to him, and I love to read!!  I require him to read (the same as you) for about 20 minutes a day, but he really doesn't like to do it.  I hear say almost every time, "but it's so haaaarrd! I hate it!  What's reading good for anyway?!"  Just like you, it infuriates me, but I try not to let it show.  I just tell him that we have to practice and that the more he practices the easier it will be.  Sometimes I even will set a timer and let him go the second it rings, even if we're not done with the book.

 

I have noticed improvement with my son, so I think perhaps my advice would be to just keep plugging away at it.  Let him know it's non-negotiable, and hold him to it.  Make it a special time just for the two of you.  Encourage the daylights out of him.  And know that eventually it will get easier. 

 

Could he have an underlying problem that is making it difficult to read?  Dyslexia?  Poor eyesight?  Could you try another reading method with him?  Letting someone else read with him?  Has he played on Starfall.com?  My son likes that.  Would it be easier for the two of you if he were learning it on his own, without your involvement?

 

Your other option is to let it go and know that he will get it when he's ready.

 

Just my two cents.  Good luck to you both.  I know how frustrating it is.

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#3 of 21 Old 01-27-2011, 06:36 PM
 
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My 7 yo. suggests you play games with him that require him to read. She doesn't much like sitting down and reading a book either (she says she sort of likes reading, so there's definitely some ambivalence there), but she's been more and more willing lately to try and read random things--today it was a letter that came in the mail for me (soliciting a law school application). Other times it's a recipe, or one day she insisted on trying to read the titles of all of DH's new textbooks.

 

She also suggests you set up a reward system for reading practice--like after so many books, he gets a treat or something.

 

Have you done much alternating reading? DD will often request that I read alternating pages in a book that seems intimidating to her--which happens a lot if there are many words to a page.


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#4 of 21 Old 01-27-2011, 06:55 PM
 
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How about a treasure hunt with clues? It can take a while for them to build stamina, but lots of short bits do add up.

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#5 of 21 Old 01-27-2011, 11:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ravin's daughter-great suggestion! We do play games requiring reading but I wonder if a reward system would be worth a try.

 

these are great suggestions

 

he does have reading eggs. the trouble is he has the skills he needs from this so I think he's playing on it. not saying thats not valuable but think he needs to increase his reading vocabulary and I don't see a way to do that except with books.

 

Its good to hear that this required reading method produces some results.

 

I've thought about just leaving it but I do think its getting to a point where its slowing him up in other subjects

 

his eyesight has been checked and he has glasses for reading. Dyslexia is obviously a concern but the thing is his basic reading skills are fine, he just doesn't have a big reading vocabulary, iykwim (a big big spoken vocabulary though)

 


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#6 of 21 Old 01-28-2011, 12:41 AM
 
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computer games helped teach my DD to read... Not that the computer game it SELF did but.. around age 5/6ish my DD became responsible enough to handle some computer time on her "own" so of course she wanted to navagate safe sites on her own and play games new games new games with written dirrections. I told her she was free to use the somputer and free to navigate sites we approved (bookmarked) but I wan't going to stop doing what I was doing every 2 mintues to come read her new game dirrections ect...

 SO for her because her desire to play more games and win at higher levels she decided she needed to learn how to read. She now reads far above her grade level and even reads now for enjoyment but she deffiently needed that push. seein that reading was to advantage helped a lot.

 

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#7 of 21 Old 01-28-2011, 07:07 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Fillyjonk View Post

I've thought about just leaving it but I do think its getting to a point where its slowing him up in other subjects

 

his eyesight has been checked and he has glasses for reading. Dyslexia is obviously a concern but the thing is his basic reading skills are fine, he just doesn't have a big reading vocabulary, iykwim (a big big spoken vocabulary though)

 


I didn't try to teach my ds to read.  He was very resistant to the idea, especially all that sound it out stuff.  He played a lot of (fun, not "educational") computer games (the Pokemon games for the DS have a surprising amount of reading) and had maybe a few dozen sight words when he turned 8.  And he just took off during the next year.  You really could likely do nothing and have your ds become fluent in the same time frame as he would through practice and effort.  And you would avoid unpleasant associations with reading, as well.  I still read to my ds for an hour or two most nights.  Sometimes, I know he reads over my shoulder, and other times he doesn't.  It gives him the opportunity to see if he knows what he thinks he knows and work out the things he doesn't know in a pleasant low pressure way.  It also enables him to enjoy books on his intellectual level rather than only having access to his much lower (but now at grade level for his age) reading level.  And that certainly is helpful for developing a love of reading.  I think half the problem was he had no interest in the books at his reading level.  He hasn't been interested in Dr Seuss since he was about 3, even though it's great for early readers.

 

I read things to ds whenever he asks because I know that that means he thinks he knows what it says but isn't sure about a couple things.  He wants to know if he is right without asking what a particular word says.    


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#8 of 21 Old 01-28-2011, 07:41 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fillyjonk View Post

 

I've done everything I think is obvious. I've bought him really interesting books. I've made reading part of everyday life. He has opportunities to write and email people. We read to him. He spends hours listening to audio books. Dp and I are always reading, there is no chance he's gained from us that reading is not a worthwhile thing to do.

.

 

Part of me thinks I've made it too easy for him to manage without reading. We read to him. He has free access to audiobooks. There aren't that many times in his life where he needs to read something and can't. On the other hand it would feel a little mean to refuse to read, say, a recipe to him because he needed to practice-I encourage him to read this stuff himself, of course, but at the end of the day I wouldn't refuse to let him cook supper because he couldn't read a recipe.

 

Is this a stage? Do they realise the value of reading? it does not help that he has several friends who are younger and fluent readers

 


I would be a bit tougher about not reading to him.

 

I have an eight year old who did not read with any fluency until about 7.5.  I think we read so much for her that she did not have to.   I will now literally refuse to read words for her.  If she is reading a recipe, i will read any words I know are too much for her, but I wait patiently while she figures out the rest.  Likewise with books - this is a child who has been read to all her life.  It is something we all enjoy.  None-the-less: what is the point of reading if someone will always do it for you?  I now read a few pages of a book she likes and then say I have stuff to do but she can continue reading if she likes.  I will also do shared reading - she reads a page, I read a page.  It started out as she read a word, I read a page; then she read a sentence, I read a page; she read a paragraph, I read a page. This transition took months.     In her case it was coupled with skill building worksheets, but in your case it sounds like your DS has many of the skills - just lacks the practice to find fluency.

 

I second using the computer to play games - where he has to do the reading.

 

Lastly, be fairly careful with book selection.  One guideline is that a child should make no more than 5 mistakes per page or the book may be too hard for them.  We are doing well with Geronimo Stilton at the moment - ymmv.  Non fiction and comics often work - they often look at the pictures a lot, but will attempt to decode a bit, and it is less intimidating that chapter books.

 

I am not sure where I stand on the audiobooks.  I might allow them in the house during daytime hours - but have him bring real books in the car.  Lots of kids are bored in the car - he may turn to it out of boredom.  At bedtime I might insist on real books - let him know he can stay up for an extra 1/2 if he reads...kids love to stay up!  

 

While my DD plays primarily non educational games, here is a site with educational games my DD has been enjoying this week:

http://www.stretchybrain.com/index.php?start=0&subject=english&grade=02

 

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#9 of 21 Old 01-28-2011, 08:33 AM
 
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I read TO my child a lot. Shes hears literature above her reading level at this time but stories she enjoys. I do think reading to your child is important and should be done far above the learning to read early years... What I wont do is read FOR her. She needs to work out her words use her phonics skills , figure out with content try... Sure I've helped or confirmed but as a whole no I wont read for her.

 

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#10 of 21 Old 01-28-2011, 02:13 PM
 
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It is often a struggle to get kids of this age to value reading, but the trick is to get them to value it.

 

Your instinct that you have made it too easy for him to manage without reading might be right.  Think about how he learned to crawl and then walk.  When he was pulling himself toward the toy, on the verge of crawling, were you inclined to just hand it to him, because it seemed mean not to?

 

People who can't read recipes can't cook using recipes.  That's not mean, that's reality.  People who can't read the directions to games don't know how to play them.

 

I second the idea of bedtime and car reading.  In the car, give him no other options for entertaining himself, at least some of the time.  And set a certain time in the evening after which the only choices for occupying himself are reading or sleeping... not as a punishment, but maybe for a while, the entire family could adhere to this.  Make a point of you interacting only with your book, and not with him at this reading time.

 

What about writing letters to him that he has to read in order to accomplish or gain something.  Maybe when you want to do a special activity, he has to follow a list of preparations to get ready, which he has to discern from the note?

 

And maybe take away the audiobooks for awhile.  He's old enough, and capable enough to read the stories on his own now.  If there's something he wants to read badly enough, he will.

 

But, don't let him spend too much time with books that are too much for him, word wise (unless he is REALLY, REALLY interested).  Current research says kids need to be independently reading books with 95% accuracy or greater (yes, 95!) It sounds like a lot, but honestly, if you had trouble reading more than 1 out of every 20 words, you would also have trouble with fluency and comprehension.

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#11 of 21 Old 01-28-2011, 07:12 PM
 
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how about getting his books on science and tell him after he reads it he can watch the show and see if the show is "right" or something --


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#12 of 21 Old 01-29-2011, 12:33 AM
 
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Now, I know this doesn't necessarily happen with every kid, but ...

 

Sometimes kids don't want to practice because they can sense that the neural pathways that will make reading efficient, easy and enjoyable aren't quite up to the task yet. Some things, particularly complex motor tasks, do need to be practiced consistently for the you to learn them. But reading isn't necessarily one of those things. I've seen unschooled kids learn to read exceptionally quickly with very little practice. My four kids learned to read differently, at different ages, in different fits and starts. But as unschoolers who were not expected to practice reading diligently unless they wanted to, they each had a sudden astronomically steep spurt up the learning curve at some point. Things started to click, and they sensed it, and learning to read became very exciting and motivating, so they wanted to practice a lot, and then they progressed even faster. Every time it happened, where they seemed to go from "beginning to read" to "near or total fluency" in the space of a few weeks, I was stunned. You'd think I'd have grown to expect it, but it still amazed me. I realized that yes, this was what they were subconsciously waiting for -- for their brains to become ready, for the circuits to start to connect so that the whole process could snowball. They wanted learning to be exciting and rewarding and fun and easy. And eventually it was. Reading suddenly made sense. It fit their brain like a good pair of jeans ... but they had to grow into it first, and the growing couldn't be hurried.

 

I have this theory that all kids have a point where they're developmentally ready for reading fluency. The average age is probably around 7.5, with a variability of up to 4 years on either side of that meaning that your kid might grow into readiness any time between 3 and 11. I really don't think you can change that point very much. If you stress learning to read from age 4, and your kids is programmed to reach developmental readiness around age 9, you'll spend five years gradually moving him towards the point of fluency. He may resist because he realizes that it's not falling into place easily, or he may comply. In either case you may end up congratulating yourself when he is finally reading well over all the hard work that you did with him, and wasn't it lucky you started at age 4 since it took so long. Yet just maybe if you'd waited until he was 9 and readiness was already in place, you would have had a kid who went from "I want to learn to read" to "The Hobbit" in 6 weeks. I've seen it happen, more than a few times.

 

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#13 of 21 Old 01-29-2011, 10:59 AM
 
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Now, I know this doesn't necessarily happen with every kid, but ...

 

Sometimes kids don't want to practice because they can sense that the neural pathways that will make reading efficient, easy and enjoyable aren't quite up to the task yet. Some things, particularly complex motor tasks, do need to be practiced consistently for the you to learn them. But reading isn't necessarily one of those things. I've seen unschooled kids learn to read exceptionally quickly with very little practice. My four kids learned to read differently, at different ages, in different fits and starts. But as unschoolers who were not expected to practice reading diligently unless they wanted to, they each had a sudden astronomically steep spurt up the learning curve at some point. Things started to click, and they sensed it, and learning to read became very exciting and motivating, so they wanted to practice a lot, and then they progressed even faster. Every time it happened, where they seemed to go from "beginning to read" to "near or total fluency" in the space of a few weeks, I was stunned. You'd think I'd have grown to expect it, but it still amazed me. I realized that yes, this was what they were subconsciously waiting for -- for their brains to become ready, for the circuits to start to connect so that the whole process could snowball. They wanted learning to be exciting and rewarding and fun and easy. And eventually it was. Reading suddenly made sense. It fit their brain like a good pair of jeans ... but they had to grow into it first, and the growing couldn't be hurried.

 

I have this theory that all kids have a point where they're developmentally ready for reading fluency. The average age is probably around 7.5, with a variability of up to 4 years on either side of that meaning that your kid might grow into readiness any time between 3 and 11. I really don't think you can change that point very much. If you stress learning to read from age 4, and your kids is programmed to reach developmental readiness around age 9, you'll spend five years gradually moving him towards the point of fluency. He may resist because he realizes that it's not falling into place easily, or he may comply. In either case you may end up congratulating yourself when he is finally reading well over all the hard work that you did with him, and wasn't it lucky you started at age 4 since it took so long. Yet just maybe if you'd waited until he was 9 and readiness was already in place, you would have had a kid who went from "I want to learn to read" to "The Hobbit" in 6 weeks. I've seen it happen, more than a few times.

 

Miranda


I really really hope that this is what will happen with my dd1 who is now 6.5 yrs old. But in some ways it seems almost too good to be true.... maybe even a gamble. And gambling with the well being of my child is very uncomfortable. Even trying to practice reading skills with her for even a few minutes a day is straining our relationship and hsing. IF I just let it go and let her "click" when she is ready, and it never clicks, then I have dramatically harmed her by not WORKING on reading with her. I honestly don't know what to do at this point.

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#14 of 21 Old 01-29-2011, 11:53 AM
 
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I really really hope that this is what will happen with my dd1 who is now 6.5 yrs old. But in some ways it seems almost too good to be true.... maybe even a gamble. And gambling with the well being of my child is very uncomfortable. Even trying to practice reading skills with her for even a few minutes a day is straining our relationship and hsing. IF I just let it go and let her "click" when she is ready, and it never clicks, then I have dramatically harmed her by not WORKING on reading with her. I honestly don't know what to do at this point.


At 6.5 you can afford to wait if actively practicing reading is causing you both grief.  You could either:

-wait until the current power struggle is over - say 3 months  (whatever it takes for her to disasssociate reading with unpleasantness), then try again

-wait until something clicks.  If it has not done so by a certain age, initiate reading again.

 

You could also mix up the way you are teaching.  if you are doing workbooks, try computer programs, etc.  

 

I tend to agree that many children learn to read around 7.   She is still on the early side of 7, you have time to wait.

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#15 of 21 Old 01-29-2011, 02:22 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Fillyjonk View Post
his eyesight has been checked and he has glasses for reading. Dyslexia is obviously a concern but the thing is his basic reading skills are fine, he just doesn't have a big reading vocabulary, iykwim (a big big spoken vocabulary though)

 


Most dyslexic kids have trouble with phonics, but there are kids who have a good understanding of phonics and still have difficulty becoming fluent readers.  My DD is one of them.  If you Google "dyseidetic dyslexia" or "naming speed deficit" you'll find some information on that type of difficulty.  At 6-7, my DD was similar to your son - smart kid, great vocabulary, loved to be read to, had the basic reading skills, but not a very good reader yet, and not very interested in practicing reading.  (But if I sat her down with a book and suggested some reading practice, she might not be enthusiastic about it, but she was basically willing.)  The older she got, the more it began to seem that there was a problem beyond just not being interested in practicing.  She was practicing, but she still just wasn't increasing her fluency much.  It's not clear to me whether her problems have to do with memory or processing speed, or both, or something else.  Researchers seem to have a variety of ideas about the underlying cause of fluency problems.  But, whatever the reason, certain things don't seem to become automatic for her as easily as they do for some other kids.  She needs extra practice to get to that point.

 

Or does she just need more time to get to the point where she's developmentally ready to be a fluent reader?  I can't say for sure, but I'm not really comfortable with sitting back and waiting to see if everything suddenly clicks, when I know there are kids who never have it click.  And, though I'm certainly no expert, I don't tend to imagine that kids are born with pre-set developmental readiness points.  It makes more sense to me that developmental readiness (for anything - reading, walking, using the toilet) would depend as much on a kid's environment and experiences as on innate physical or mental characteristics.  So I encourage regular reading practice.

 

I don't have a kid who's really resistant to practice, but if I did, I think I'd still try hard to make practice happen, but also try hard not to make it an unpleasant battle.  One thing I'd suggest, especially if I thought your DS had the same kind of problem as my DD, would be to back way up on the difficulty of what you're asking him to do.  If it's taking him 20 minutes to read 16 lines, that text is probably too hard for him.  No wonder he doesn't enjoy it - it's clearly a struggle for him.  I'd back up to something with only a line or two of text on a page, and only words he can read fairly fluently (like, taking no more than about 3 seconds to figure out most of the words.)  And I'd have him read the same text every day until he was really comfortable with it before moving on to something new.  In other words, I'd work on building fluency with what he already knows before working on more advanced phonics.  It took me a while to realize this was the right approach for my DD.

 

To make it more fun, can you come up with your own funny little stories or cartoons?  My kids find the stuff I've written especially for them a lot more fun than the typical easy reader.  And I can make the text just the right difficulty and include words they need practice with - I can focus on "ack" endings or "sh" words or sight words like "who" and "where" - whatever we're working on.  For example, I did a cartoon recently for my 5 year old where one stick figure asks the other, "Can a cow eat an owl?" and then they test it out.  (Badly Drawn Cow: Hmm. It fits in my mouth.  But I do not like it.  Ptoo!  Owl: This is a bad day.)  The 8 year old thought that one was funny too.  Or maybe your DS would like a cartoon about poop. 

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#16 of 21 Old 01-30-2011, 10:15 AM - Thread Starter
 
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thanks for all replies! You guys are great and its given me loads of food for thought.

 

yeah, I'm in two minds really

 

What I don't think I said earlier, and what is probably a bit relevant, is that we've only really been doing the reading thing for around 10 weeks. So based on that, he's not actually doing that badly (prior to this he was in a waldorf kindergarten-NO reading or writing there!) .

 

(I was in SUCH a bad mood when I wrote that first post-we are virtually a screen free family. Had he said "reading is boring" even that might have been ok...I over-react where the TV is concerned and I know it)

 

The trouble is, he happens to have a (younger, fgs) sister and a lot of friends who have picked up reading pretty well with very minimal instruction and a good dose of phonics based computer . programs. We're also quite lucky generally in that we're a part of a strong local HSing network, here though it means there is a lot of frantic not-comparing going on, iykwim.

 

I do also find it disconcerting that he is struggling with this, he is a child with a very large vocabulary, who does not seem to have trouble with anything else, really, he generally gets things quickly and with, say music or sport he'll have a goal and put the time in...but with this, he just isn't doing it.

 

I think there are some great suggestions here and what I will probably do is relax and stop being quite so ridiculous for maybe a year or two. It makes perfect sense to me that reading would be developmental in terms of the earliest age that its possible for any given child. It does not help that dp and I were very early readers (like age 3) and we get a lot of pressure from one set of grandparents on this one ("well YOU were reading at 3....")

 

Totally agree re the backing up of difficulty thing. Part of the reason it was taking him so long to read 16 lines was that he was being very grumpy about the whole thing. Today he read 10 pages of the same book in 20 minutes, and tbh I think it only took him that long because he was singing it (this helps. he'll read anything if its a song) and was struggling a bit with finding a melody ;-) As you do. But the other issue we have is that he only wants to read very factual books and the easiest of these we've found are the Dr Seuss sciencey books-inside your outside, say can you seed, etc. Can't find any easier science books than those!

 

I think for us it would not work to refuse to help him because he could not read-but then I don't actually think deep down he is being lazy. It would feel to me, at this time, like saying to a baby who couldn't stand that I wouldn't hold them up to see something. But this might change, certainly if I homestly felt he was on the cusp of reading but refusing to push himself I might discuss this with him. I don't think I'd be happy to stop reading to him or cut out audiobooks, especially since he does watch very little TV, and I do think they have a big net benefit to him.

 

Since that post I've done a few things. I've realised he actually does quite a lot of incidental reading, more than I thought. He does actually read, say, the instructions in his maths books, and since from what I can work out he's working above his age, these aren't always particularly easy instructions. He reads instructions for (board) games, or for putting models and so on together. He'll ask for help with an odd word but nothing major. Actually, he can follow a recipe from something like a kids cookery book (Honest Pretzels or similar), the issue comes if he wants to make something more complex.

 

I've also made a deal with him. I'm feeling more than a bit guilty about my nearly 3 yo who gets far far less attention, stories of her choice read to her, etc than he or dd1 did at this age, (yes I know...this is life...but the guilt is there). I've said it would be nice if, given I'm spending a lot of time with him doing his stuff (bearing in mind now that he WANTS to do most of the homeschooling stuff we do) , he could read to her throughout the day when he gets a chance. He's really keen on this and it works so well for both of them.


Raising Geek_Generation_2.0 :LET ds= 10 ; LET dd1= ds - 2; LET dd2=dd-2; IF month=0.67 THEN LET ds = ds+1; 
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#17 of 21 Old 01-30-2011, 10:23 AM
 
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"What I don't think I said earlier, and what is probably a bit relevant, is that we've only really been doing the reading thing for around 10 weeks."

 

Oh. OH. Yeah, that makes a pretty big difference. My son has been reading for 3 years. orngbiggrin.gif 10 weeks into the instruction process, we were still working on short-vowel sounds. LOL, I think you are going to be OK. 

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#18 of 21 Old 01-30-2011, 11:00 AM - Thread Starter
 
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lol. you know what, it was a BAD day!

 

But I do have 3 kids, so I'm sure all these great ideas will be of help to me at some point ;-)


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#19 of 21 Old 01-30-2011, 11:06 AM
 
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Yeah, it makes a huge difference knowing he's only been reading for 10 weeks.  It sounds like he's picking it up quickly.  He really doesn't sound at all like my struggling DD, who was still not yet reading at quite that level when she was 7, even though she had started reading simple words 4 years earlier.  And I wouldn't worry too much about his lack of interest in practicing (especially since it sounds like he really is practicing on his own in daily life.)  I bet it will get a lot easier and a lot more fun for him soon.

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#20 of 21 Old 01-30-2011, 03:49 PM
 
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Originally Posted by jeteaa View Post

I really really hope that this is what will happen with my dd1 who is now 6.5 yrs old. But in some ways it seems almost too good to be true.... maybe even a gamble. And gambling with the well being of my child is very uncomfortable. Even trying to practice reading skills with her for even a few minutes a day is straining our relationship and hsing. IF I just let it go and let her "click" when she is ready, and it never clicks, then I have dramatically harmed her by not WORKING on reading with her. I honestly don't know what to do at this point.


We've taken a relaxed but not unschooled approach to reading with DS, who is 7.5 - we've tried varying approaches from time to time, but backed off for a while or tried a different approach if it was clear he was causing stress. I've definitely noticed a number of sudden cognitive jumps that have improved his reading ability, though he's still not particularly near fluent. And I do get the impression that it's largely a matter of increasing developmental readiness at least as much as anything we're doing with him.

 

And yes, it's stressful and hard to trust the process. But the "clicks", as well as an increase in motivation, has in fact happened for us.

 

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Originally Posted by Ravin View Post

Have you done much alternating reading? DD will often request that I read alternating pages in a book that seems intimidating to her--which happens a lot if there are many words to a page.

This is what we're doing now. Not even alternating pages. He wants to read chapter books, but doesn't have the sight words or stamina. So we're reading a Boxcar Children book at the moment, and I'll have him read sentences or short paragraphs here and there that I'm pretty sure he can handle. It's definitely stretching his abilities, and he enjoys it much more than the books he can actually read all by himself (though I've gotten a few easy readers to try when we're done with this that I think he'll get a bit more out of.

 

Progressive Phonics is a phonics program that takes this approach. It worked well for us before. At the point where we are now, I feel like I need to rearrange things a bit, but haven't gotten around to it :)

 

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Originally Posted by kathymuggle View Post

I am not sure where I stand on the audiobooks.  I might allow them in the house during daytime hours - but have him bring real books in the car.  Lots of kids are bored in the car - he may turn to it out of boredom.  At bedtime I might insist on real books - let him know he can stay up for an extra 1/2 if he reads...kids love to stay up!  

 

We have the audiobook problem, too. I love them, because we get them almost exclusively from librivox, and they're really developing his taste for classic books with complex language. However, he'll listen to them ALL DAY if we let him.

 

We've set a rule that he's only allowed to listen to them if he's working on something (such as weaving) or if he's outside, and that helps.

 

I do like the idea of only real books after a certain point in the day - for myself as well! I keep meaning to read more, but end up doing computer stuff or playing sudoku on my phone or something dumb like that instead.

 

For read-alouds, I usually refuse to read more than the first book in a series, leaving the others as motivation for independent reading.


DS born 6/03, DD1 born 9/06, DD2 born 10/10, DD3 born 4/14.
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#21 of 21 Old 01-30-2011, 03:52 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Fillyjonk View Post

 

The trouble is, he happens to have a (younger, fgs) sister and a lot of friends who have picked up reading pretty well with very minimal instruction and a good dose of phonics based computer . programs. We're also quite lucky generally in that we're a part of a strong local HSing network, here though it means there is a lot of frantic not-comparing going on, iykwim.

Same boat! Mine's younger sister, who is 4, is quickly catching up to him in reading. She's much more motivated and just catching on quicker.

 

I'm just glad he's first! If she'd been first, and reading this early, I think I'd have been a lot more worried about him.
 


DS born 6/03, DD1 born 9/06, DD2 born 10/10, DD3 born 4/14.
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