|Brady's ever-expanding "library."|
Brady has several crates in his room stuffed with books that he calls his "library." I like that he thinks of it as his own personal library. We're always adding to it.
The things is, Brady may LOVE books, really love them, but he's still a little hesitant about reading. (And writing will be our next goal)
He's improving. He looked over my shoulder the other day and easily read an entire reply I left to someone's comment on one of my posts.
And he didn't even HAVE to do that. He just did it because he could. Now, either he's getting better, or my comments aren't all that complex. Ha! Maybe both.
The other night he brought home a "Step 2" book. "What does that mean?" he asked. I told him: "It says, 'reading with help," to which he said proudly, "I don't need help! I can read it myself!"
The school sent home a note that he was getting further reading assistance at school. That's great. But I didn't want to leave it at that. I want to help from home to alleviate his hesitancy, motivate him and help improve his skills.
Here are the ways we are achieving that:
Communicate with teachers & support the school
First and foremost, I want to understand what they are observing, and both get and give suggestions. I immediately emailed the reading teacher and we exchanged a few emails. I also encourage Brady to participate in the reading groups and do his best. I ask him every day how they went, what he learned, what was good or bad about it and we talk it through.
Read things other than books
Notes, words on TV shows or commercials, boxes at the store, signs when we're out. I want him to see reading as practical as well as fun. And the more practice the better. At the dentist's office he read this cartoon on the wall, after which he cracked up:
Get new books regularly
We order books from school every time they send an order sheet home. I work it out so they are usually both cheapy and interesting, so it is usually less than $15 for 4 or 5 books. It tells Brady I think it's important and keeps him excited about reading. You could also have a regular library time to check out books or trips to the Goodwill or used book store.
Sometimes I read to him, sometimes he reads to me. I don't want all the pressure on him, but I don't want to let him off the hook either. He gets challenged but then gets to relax and enjoy the story too.
Feed the passion
We choose books he's really excited about, like Star Wars or Transformers or Little Critter. If he's not into a book, we don't read it right then.
Make it a routine
Reading has been a part of our daily routine forever, always at bedtime, and sometimes throughout the day too. No day goes by without reading at some point, even in the summer.
Why is it important
I remind him reading is the basis for everything - the math he loves so much, the books he enjoys, becoming an inventor, going to college, finding a good job. I show him the ways in which I have to read every day to be successful in my life.
Speak your attitude
Lastly, I tell him if he changes his attitude he will enjoy reading more. That if he speaks good things about it, he will feel good things. Doesn't always work, but slowly I think we are changing his perspective.