“My kid hates reading, help!”

From the mailbag:

"Dear Mama Bear,

My kid, age 7, absolutely hates reading.  How can I get her interested in it?


Anne from Florida"

Dear Anne,

MamaBear really hears you on this!

Reading can be a tremendous delight and all around fantastic activity, but if the kid actively *hates* it, she'll really be missing out in the future.

So kudos to you for addressing this now!

First, determine just *why* your child would prefer picking fungus out of a decayed onion as opposed to reading.

Might she find it difficult to process the words?

Perhaps she's dyslexic and doesn't yet "see" the words?

Download the free report "Is My Child Dyslexic?" and see the signs mentioned are demonstrated by your kid.  If so, visit the site Dyslexia Parents Resource and see what the next best step would be.

If it turns out your kid isn't dyslexic, but still hates reading, consider her favorite hobby.

Let's say that it's comics. 

Go to the library and take out a favorite comic book that's age-appropriate.

Every evening, have her read one page and then tell you an alternative ending, one that she imagines up herself.

Then you do the same thing (make it a parent/kid fun-time opportunity).

From there, see if you can find a computer/educational game that deals with the same topic (perhaps from the Reader Rabbit series).  Set up playing that game as a reward/privilege/etc….ie, something to look forward to!

The main key here is to first:

  • Get at why your child doesn't like reading

and then

  • Remove the cause for dislike and replace it with something that makes them go "Yippie!"

Whatever you do, remember…this is a long-term process!  Start with baby-steps and make sure to praise your cub to the skies when she proactively does *anything*, no matter how small, regarding reading. 

You'd be surprised at how powerful a parent's encouragement and pride can spur kids to want more.

Thus speaks…Mama Bear

ps – regarding reading software, you might enjoy:

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