Challenge Your Reader

Family members, the best intentions, keep buying my son those reading sets that use popular movies such as Star Wars. To be honest I hate them. The pictures are a distraction and they read a lot like a comic book. Yet my son isn’t to the level where he can read other books. Enter the Frog and Toad series. What isn’t to like about them? They have enough words that he can sound out and some that I just help him with because we haven’t got to that lesson yet. These types of books challenges him to read while boosting confidence that he can learn. Some stories are harder them others but many words he is learning by sight (for now) and he is thrilled when he remembers a particularly difficult word. At first he didn’t want to read them because it was a challenge. It has been a long semester of complaints and refusals. I kept the challenge and rewarded him with praise when he stuck with it and finished. Another thing I changed up was not assigning pages. Instead we read for a time limit. Some days we only read 3 pages. Other days we got through an entire story. By not assigning pages he stopped trying to look ahead and losing his place.

Another challenge he has to work on is keeping his eyes on the book and not looking at me for approval that his reading is correct. Currently I have to hold my hand up to his face like those blinders you see on horses pulling a wagon. When I do this he is much better at his reading.

We are not reading for comprehension yet. That is too much of a stretch for his little brain. Reading comprehension comes when I read a story and he needs to tell me what is happening. This is still a work in progress.

All this to say that it is good to challenge your kids in areas that they need help with. This is where my classical education tendencies come into play. By giving them a challenge you just might be able to facilitate those leaps of learning in your kiddo.

May God give you patience and grace. Keep trail blazing.


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