Q. Why are so many kids finding it hard to learn to read?
A. Maybe they aren’t reading enough. Learning to easily read is a bit like learning to swim. If you don’t practice you won’t get better.
Q. What advice would you give parents?
A. Read a little ‘something’ to your children every day. And let them see that you yourself enjoy reading. If you don’t show some interest and enjoyment, your kids won’t either. Above all don’t make reading an issue. It’s said that the only valid things worth fighting about as your child grows older are sex, drugs, alcohol and sleep.
Q. Why do librarians, teachers, writers and publishers talk about “actual age ‘and’ reading age’?
A. Sometimes a child’s chronological age doesn’t match his or her reading age. Some kids can read far in advance of their actual age. Some kids are slower. It’s the “reading age” that counts.
Sometimes parents want their children to read books beyond the child’s ability and interests. Sometimes the child can read the actual words but is having difficulty understanding content. Be realistic. If a child is pushed to read beyond his reading age or interests, it will rapidly act as a ‘turn off’.
Q. Will I make my kid read more by switching off the TV and limiting their mobile time?
A. Possibly not. The secret is to make your own reading aloud just as fascinating as what the child watches on TV. You can do this by showing how much you enjoy the story by doing your best to read it as an exciting process – such as acting out the voices -and by giving the child all your attention while you read.