By Renee Cox, B.S., Learning Specialist
My child is struggling with reading. What can I do to help them?
Reading is a skill that we use throughout all of our lives. Those who struggle with reading may have low self-esteem and feel like they are not smart. However, there is hope for those who struggle! Given the right tools and extra time and effort, children can improve their reading skills and increase their confidence and feelings of self-worth. It is so worthwhile to find help for a child who is struggling with reading!
Some may ask, “What if I just give them a bit more time? Won’t they learn how to read eventually?” Some children are slow learners and may just need more time to learn how to read. For other children, they may learn in a different way and if they are never given the proper tools to help them learn, reading will always be a struggle.
If your child shows signs that reading is a struggle for them, here are some ways you can help.
1. Talk to your child to find out what they are struggling with. Are the letters on a page blurry? Do they find it difficult to remember the sounds that letters make? Can they read individual words but have trouble getting meaning from them? Are they able to find meaning from a story if it is read to them?
2. Talk to your child’s teacher to see what they are observing in the classroom. Find out what strategies they are using and ask for any suggestions they might have.
3. Talk to other friends who have children that struggle with reading to see what worked for their child. (This also serves as a reassurance that your child is not alone.) Many children struggle with reading and may learn best by being taught a different approach to reading, or being taught in a one-on-one setting, or by having the opportunity to learn at their own pace.
4. Pursue a reading/language evaluation and possible tutoring. Having an evaluation done can pinpoint some of the areas that are weak, as well as show where your child’s strengths lie. As you work to find a way to help your child, don’t forget to encourage the areas where they have strengths.
If you suspect that your child needs help, the sooner you can provide support for them, the better. There are many avenues and options available to help children who struggle with reading!
Enrichment Therapy & Learning Center has locations in the Iowa City, IA area and Des Moines, IA area. We provide individual speech-language therapy and tutoring as well as offering small group academic programs. At Enrichment Therapy & Learning Center our passion is to help kids achieve effective communication skills and gain academic success. Contact us for more information on how we can help your child succeed.
740 Community Drive, Unit A
North Liberty, IA 52317
5530 West Pkwy, Suite 300
Johnston, IA 50131