7 Rookie Mom Reading Mistakes (Part 2)

This is Part Two of a Three Part
series. Be sure to check out Rookie Mom Reading Mistakes Part One if you missed it.

Avoid these mistakes in helping your child learn to read
I hated not
knowing what type of reader my son would turn out to be. It was really hard
standing there with him at age four looking up at age 7 or 8. I wanted so badly
for him to love reading.
My passion tripped me up a bit.
I should
stop and tell you, though, that it all turned out fine. Thanks to fantastic
teachers, my second grader is reading above grade level and every once in a
while actually reads voluntarily. I should be happy with that.
It’s just
that I am such a book lover that I wonder what I could have done differently. I
wish he liked reading more. I worry
that I squelched some of the joy out of it for him.
Here are a
few more mistakes I made. I hope that you can avoid them.

Mistake #3 – Pushing too Hard

When a
little person is your everything, you
don’t want them to miss out on anything.
Plus, it’s hard not to feel competitive when the kid down the street is playing
violin at age three or reading Harry
Potter
in second grade.

Is Early Literacy the Answer?

When my son
was a beginning reader I made a tactical error. I envisioned him falling in
love with reading and becoming an avid reader, expanding his world and feeding
his imagination …if only he would practice and advance just a little bit more.
So, I pushed him to read.

When he
failed to show an interest in early literacy activities, I worked harder to
find ones that were more fun. When he didn’t want to read to me, I cajoled him
by letting him read in silly voices or by giving a small reward.

I didn’t realize that he was telling me something. He was telling me that he wasn’t ready.

Lesson Learned

Kids develop
at different rates. We all know that, yet it’s hard when it’s your kid who’s
still crawling and others are walking. Just like you can’t make a baby walk
(unless there’s something serious going on), you can’t make a kid read (unless
there’s a real problem needing intervention). As parents, we just have to be
patient, and sit back to watch.

That’s
exactly what I’m trying to do with my girls. We have a book-filled home, and we
read to them a lot. I even printed out some sight word flash cards for them,
but I let them take the lead on when they want to work with them. 

There’s still
plenty of time.


Mistake #4 – Not Considering Personality 

I
didn’t take my little reader’s personality into account at all.  I put blinders on to the fact that he has
much more in common personality-wise with his engineer father than he does with
his book-loving mother.
In
hindsight, there is plenty I could have done.
For example,
I could have written down steps involved in building his Lego creations, and
had him check my accuracy. Or we could have tried one of the awesome STEM activities on Pinterest, with me recording his observations in a little lab
notebook for him to read back later.

In short, I
tried to fit him into a neat little reading box just like mine, instead of building
a brand new box just for him.

To Be Continued

Be sure to check back on Wednesday Thursday (it’s that kind of week…) for the final installment of this series. Thanks for reading!

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