Reading for Alex has been a struggle! I don’t want to compare my children to one another, but when Aric started school he immediately took to learning to read, write, and do math with very little effort on our part. However with Alex it seemed like an almost impossible task.
Our afternoon would go something like this: pick up the boys from school, talk about their day, get home, remind them to read. Aric gets his book and goes to his room. Alex sits down to watch tv. Renee tells Alex to turn off the tv. Alex complains. Renee tells Alex to get his book bag. Alex gets his book bag and complains more. Renee gets out the reading homework and tells Alex to come read to her. Alex says he’s tired. Renee tells him to come read anyways. Alex takes 5 minutes to read a title he has already read several times at school and at home that week. Alex gets done with a few words and gets distracted by the pictures, then starts guessing what words say. Renee gets him back on track. Alex says he’s tired. Renee tells him he can take a nap after he reads. Alex finishes 2 pages. Alex forgets a word. Renee reminds him. Alex guesses the word. Renee reminds him again. Alex cries. Renee tries to calmly remind him of the word again. Alex guesses again. Renee gets annoyed. Alex cries more. Renee sends Alex to the corner. Alex finally stops crying and is ready to read again and finishes the rest of the book with very little trouble.
This was the pattern for the first three months of Alex 1st Grade. (There was some drama in kindergarten, but not nearly as bad) With this pattern of forever frustration, we wondered if Alex would ever learn to read. But then something amazing happened after so many afternoons of pulling out our hair. At school Alex picked up a book he hadn’t read before and read flawlessly. It was a few days before we knew about this. His teacher came to me one day when I was subbing and said she was so proud of Alex and how it seemed like reading finally clicked with him and now he is one of the best readers in his class. He was so excited about finally being able to read with fluency that the next time he went to the library he picked out a Junie B. Jones book to read (a chapter book).
It was hard work and we weren’t always as patient as we should have been, but we tried to stay consistent even when some days we felt like just giving up. In the end though all of his hard work and our struggling to help him paid off.
What areas have you had to struggle with in helping your children? Have you seen victories? What are ways you have found to be helpful in helping your children in their schooling?