Reading Difficulties In Children
If we have reading difficulties as kids, they can still be with us in adulthood. I said, if we have reading difficulties as kids, they can still...
And yes, it’s all too easy to joke, but that’s the problem; people do.
It’s bad enough falling behind in class, but falling behind in life can be just as tough. Or can it? Reading issues don’t seem to have held Steven Spielberg back, nor Sir Richard Branson or Tom Cruise, all acknowledged dyslexics. While far from proof that reading isn’t critical to success, they do still offer the sort of inspiration it’s nice to have if life has dealt you or a loved one a dodgy reading card.
Fortunately, we live in an age of spectacular advancement. We will soon know how to control mouse cursor movements with our minds. Heady times indeed, and for every scientist focused on odd topics, you can bet there are a hundred more focused on kids and ways to overcome reading disabilities.
What is a reading disability?
Well, it’s essentially a neurological condition, but not always. Most kids and adults with genuine reading issues will have some form of dyslexia, auditory processing disorder (APD), attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), or some similar issue.
So what’s the first step?
The best way is to find a comfortable seat next to your child on the school bus to better reading and accept that it will take time. The bus will break down every so often, but after minor repair, it’ll move forward again and so will your child’s grasp of the written word.
Remember, the journey is what your child will remember looking back, so make it an adventure; high five every success, shrug off every failure and be happy for the bus to take a few wrong turns along the way: detours can turn out to be the real successes.
How can a wrong turn lead to success?
Because while you’re driving quietly along and waving gleefully at every small reading success, you can happen upon some surprising abilities you didn’t know your child had. You simply have to let the bus to better reading go where it wants to go.
If it goes to a sports field, let it if your child suddenly shows a spectacular sidestep that leads to rugby that leads to group bonding that leads to higher self-esteem that leads to confidence to tackle reading in a new light.
If it goes to the arts department, let it if your child suddenly stares at the swirl of colour they’re creating with a focus you’ve never seen before that leads to passion that leads to concentration and new confidence in all aspects of life.
Spell it out
Share your own dodgy experiences and life challenges with your child. Let them know they’re not alone in this and that bad spelling, reading and writing doesn’t make a bad person; it makes a good person with exciting challenges. Remind them that even those kids who can read probably face other problems of their own.
Read it out
Reading out loud helps your child to put words and phrases into context and to start the process of enjoying stories. Read to them every day and watch their interest and imagination grow. Are you interested in more tips to give a great start to young children? Check out some of our other Education and Childcare articles.