6 - 9 years resistant readers
- Don't get angry or impatient! There's no better way to turn you child off learning than for her to think that she's going to disappoint you before she even begins. So before you start to read with her, take a deep breath and make sure that you've set aside plenty of time to read together
- Discuss with your child why she doesn't want to read. Sometimes there's an obvious answer - she wants to watch TV with her siblings, there's a game of footy in the backyard she wants to be part of - and an easy fix.
- Talk to her class teacher to find out what strategies are being used at school to encourage her to read, and consider what you could do at home to support her reading.
- Think about getting her assessed if she seems to be struggling to learn or has difficulty recognising letters.
- Check that her eyesight is OK. A young child will not necessarily understand that her eyesight is poor, and if she does turn out to need glasses, much of her difficulty in reading could be due to how tired she becomes concentrating and straining to read.
All children learn at their own pace and when they're ready. If your child seems to be learning at a slower rate than her friends, don't panic. Just keep persisting with her and she will get there in the end. Try to keep her interested in reading by using material that interests her - and you don't have to restrict reading to books; try magazines, comics, newspapers for variety.
When your child stumbles on an unknown word:
- Give her time to work out the word. Try to resist rushing in to help her.
- Go back to the beginning of the sentence, or read past the difficult word to the end of the sentence.
- Look together for a possible clue in the picture or the words
- Look at the first letter and talk about what words it could be
- Ask your child if the word she's settled on makes sense in the context of the sentence
- Attempt to sound out the word
- Give her the word if all these strategies haven't worked
- Acknowledge your child for her efforts - even if she's made plenty of mistakes.