"Ugh, I don't want to Read..."
"I don't like Reading..."
"Reading is SOO boring..."
"Why do I have to read during my free time?"
Parents, do any of these statements sound familiar? Have you heard your child express Reading in this way?
If you answered yes, please know that you are not alone. It's actually more common than you may think for your child to dislike Reading. When I have consultation calls with parents, I hear so many parents share and express their frustration and confusion that they feel when it comes time to get their child to Read.
But...what if I told you there is good news to this? Would you believe that there is light on the other side of this, what feels like "never ending" dark tunnel of your child disliking Reading with a passion?
What if I told you that I have one of the secrets in this blog of how to get your child to go from HATING reading to LOVING reading? What if I told you that your child would one day ask you to go to the bookstore or library to pick out a book? What if you knew you could walk in the house one day and see your child Reading a book with their nose glued to the page? What if I told you that if you keep Reading this blog, you may wake up one day and hear your child say something like: "I think I love to Read after all."
Well, that is 100% possible, I have seen it happen time and time again once I share this secret with parents. I have so many parents who have came to me and simply said: "You changed my child's life, and mine as well, thank you!"
Alright....I know at this point you are probably thinking, come on Angela, lets get to it! So here we go. Most students who don't love Reading, typically don't love it because they have not found the "Just right" book for them.
We have to approach Reading, just like we would watching TV. If a person says, "I hate watching TV!" It's probably not because they just hate watching TV, it most likely comes from the fact that they have not found a TV show that they enjoy...yet. Once they find a TV show that is captivating for them, I bet they will turn the TV on more often! It's the same with books. Once your child finds that "Just Right" book, they will begin to enjoy Reading and they probably will hate having to put the book down.
Steps to get your child to FALL IN LOVE with Reading!
Step 1: Take your child to the bookstore or the library. Have them look at the COVER and TITLE only and pick 2 or 3 books they find interesting.
Step 2: Have your child sit with those 2 or 3 books and read the "blurb." The "blurb" is typically located in the back of the book, but for some books it may be in the front cover. The blurb is important because it can help them get a quick summary of what the book is about to see if it still sparks their interest. They may decide that 1 of the books they choose is not as appealing as it may have looked.
Step 3: Have your child turn to the middle of each book and read 1 page only. While reading, they need to incorporate the 5 finger rule.
Step 4: As they read the middle page, do the 5 finger rule. The 5 finger rule is a great way for your child to decide if the book is going to be "just right" for them. Out of all steps, I would say this one is one of the most important.
The 5 Finger Rule!
Here's how the 5 finger rule works. As they read, every word that they do not know how to SOUND out, they must hold up a finger.
0-1 finger= The book is probably going to be too easy. This is not ideal because it could possibly lead your child to become "bored" of Reading, and we don't want that!
1-2 fingers = This book is a PERFECT choice and it is a "Just right" book!
3-4 fingers=This is not a "Just right" book, but it could be if they are up for a pretty big challenge or can have ongoing support while Reading. It's okay if your child wants to give this type of book a try, just know that if they do, they may need support from you on certain pages, so that is something you and your child need to be prepared for.
5 fingers= This is not a "Just right" book. I highly recommend do not even try getting a book where they hold up 5 fingers to a page. Parents, you can encourage your child by saying something like: "If you keep practicing, you will most likely be able to read this book in the next couple of months.
Parents, this is the secret to getting your child to fall in LOVE with Reading. Overtime, by doing this, you will see improvement and more of an interest when it comes to your child's Reading.
Also parents, I know you are busy, so my advice is to get an index card, planner, journal (somewhere safe) and write these steps down. I also advise you to look on your family's calendar and choose a date/time you could go to the bookstore and try this!
Please let me know how it goes when you do it, you can either comment on this blog post or email me and let me know at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Best wishes to your young reader!
XOXO, Angela with LCB Tutoring