Does your child “hate” reading? Often, children who “hate” reading find it difficult, exhausting, and therefore unenjoyable. If your child is struggling with reading, it’s imperative that they receive explicit reading instruction so that reading becomes easier for them.
But what if they’ve received instruction, are reading at grade level, and still hate it?
According to Dr. Ezra Werb, M.Ed. in a recent ADDitude blog post, reading anxiety from years of struggle could still be present, and “their mental energy just can’t sustain the task.” To help ease any anxiety around reading, Dr. Werb listed five strategies.
1. Choose Books Related to the Child’s Interests
What is your child interested in? Your child will feel more confident reading if they are already excited by the topic. Is your child interested in Minecraft? There’s a book for that. Are they a dog lover? There are so many dog books to choose from!
2. Allow Graphic Novels
Many feel that graphic novels do not contain enough words to be effective reading practice. However, they do allow for great comprehension practice. Graphic novels require readers to analyze the images and combine those with dialogue and narration to obtain meaning. Completing these books will still increase your child’s confidence in reading, and you may be able to use them as a stepping stone to a more traditional novel in the same genre.
3. Use Audiobooks for Extra Support
Prompt your child to follow along with the text of a novel while listening to the audio version. Hearing the words will allow them to use less energy in processing. This can help your child read more challenging novels with confidence.
4. Read Books That Have Been Made Into Movies
Reading a book and then watching the movie can be fun, but have you tried it the other way around? Some students appear more engaged when they already know the main parts of the story. They can read with confidence because they won’t feel like it will be difficult to read and unfold a whole new story. Plus, it’s always fun to compare the movie to the book!
5. Get to the Library!
Allow your child to discover a book on their own at your local library. It’s so much more exciting than browsing books on the internet!