Reading struggles are normal

Learning to read or having ongoing reading issues is a common and normal part of learning.

Whilst it’s normal and nothing to be embarrassed about, it is important to seek help to ensure they don’t fall behind. Reading is the foundation for a lot of things both within in learning and in life. Getting in early will assist with getting those problems or struggles addresses quickly.

Perhaps speaking to the teacher might help in pinpointing some exact strategies that could help. Maybe these could be implemented at home and worked on when possible.

One thing you could try is reading with your child. Reading aloud allows the skills to be practised with the support of someone else doing it too. It might help with pronunciation and help them to decode the meaning of words they perhaps might not have known. Asking questions is also on the table if they are unsure of the story. As another incentive, as a parent, you also get the chance to hear what they struggle with.

Most classrooms with offer students sight words to work on too. These sight words might be frequency words that coincide with their learning levels and abilities. They learn to recognise the words they come across, develop a sense of fluency and comprehend their meaning. Why not put the sight words on the fridge door. It will draw attention to these words on a regular basis.

Whilst being exposed to familiar words help, what is also important is to let children learn new words. The more they recognise the words, the easier it will be when they come across them within an exercise or a book. Find stories and books that feature new words and change up what you read so it doesn’t become a routine of words they are accustomed to. Ask your child to point out the words they don’t know when it comes across in a book. See if they can find a new word each time you turn the page.

Now put some fun in it! Word games are helpful for students who struggle with confidence when they read. Being a fun exercise, children will be more engaged with words and stories. Scrabble, Sequences letters and fun car games like ‘I Spy’ enhance literacy. If you’re looking for more word games why not google online to see what else is out there.

Something else that can get in the way of reading, is the student’s focus. This affects their ability to comprehend words and determine their meaning. Why not try audiobooks, they can listen while looking at the pictures within the book, following along with the words. Read in a quiet place where they can’t be distracted by surrounding sounds or environments.