how to help a Child who hates reading

Is your child one who hates reading… so much so that it is a constant struggle to convince them to read anything willingly? They throw temper tantrums, cry, yell and throw their text books just because you’ve asked them to read something. Have you tried everything you can think of to entice and encourage reading, but to no avail?

You’re not alone if your child reacts this way to the thought of reading! It’s an uphill battle for both home and traditionally schooled children that can set them behind in their studies and cause lots of unnecessary stress! You know it’s not a lack of intelligence, the kid can do math like a whiz, has an incredibly active imagination and is beyond creative, but when it comes to reading, it’s like they just completely shut down. This is a clear sign that your child has different ways of learning and although reading is not something they currently enjoy, you can facilitate a shift in their outlook and possibly even in your own!
The beauty of homeschooling is that you have the option to try new things, customize lesson plans and work with your child’s strengths and learning styles. Here we count down 5 simple but helpful tips to get your child interested and excited about reading.

5) Take The Pressure Off

Many children will resist pressure from a parent and even push back, driving you both even further from a solution. If reading time causes tantrums, try re-framing things and call it something different. Encourage your child to get involved in reading about a topic of interest, something exciting that brings them joy. By taking the pressure off, you can still have time dedicated to reading but without the stress or the fight. Once children learn that reading doesn’t have to be so structured and can in fact, be enjoyable, they are more likely to want to do it all on their own!

4) Get to Know What They Like

Consider for a moment how bored you would be if you were forced to read about a subject you had less than zero interest in. Even for adults who love a good book, it may seem difficult to drudge through certain reading material. Your child is no different, so finding topics of interest and intrigue will help you both get ahead in the battle of the books! Whether your child is fascinated by fiction or touched by true stories, it’s less about the content and more about making the act of reading a worthwhile one and turning a torturous task into something they enjoy and want to do more often!

3) Provide an Incentive

If your child doesn’t naturally gravitate towards reading, try incentivising them in creative ways. Perhaps they read to earn small prizes or as part of a learning game where they can experience the fun of reading. Allow them to feel the pride and excitement that comes from reading for a purpose and the confidence it provides them. If there’s something your child is curious about, encourage them to search for the information (like a scavenger hunt) in order to find what they’re looking for. Again, the way this is framed can make as big a difference as anything. If your child is positioned to be participating in a game, they are primed for excitement and fun, yet they also know they will have to work hard if they want to do well. In this case, their desire to play the game drives them to participate in the necessary ways by reading.

2) Incorporate Reading Into Lessons

Now that you’ve relaxed and taken the pressure off, figured out your child’s reading interest and provided them an incentive, it’s time to incorporate the reading into lessons. As we mentioned earlier, home schooling allows for the flexibility to incorporate variety into your lesson plans and therefore incorporate topics complementary to your child’s reading material into the works. Think adventures in history, fascinating mathematicians, etc. Creating ties between your current lesson plan and topics you know are of interest to your child will make the information seem that much more relevant and applicable to them.

1) Think Outside The Box

Interesting information doesn’t come from textbooks or workbooks alone. There are countless sources of useful educational material, so use your imagination and think outside of the box. Consider educationally appropriate websites, blogs, magazines, and news reports that offer value for your child. Utilizing such resources will ensure they have new and stimulating sources of information while ensuring that they learn how to read from online sources. We live in a digitally dominated world and providing your child with an early introduction to online resources will prove valuable for them both in the present and the future!
Reading is a critically important skill for children to learn and schooling at home is an art that allows you to shape the way your child relates to reading. Hopefully you and your youngster will have fun experimenting with these tips and bringing joy back to your homeschooling sessions! For more resources on teaching the art of reading, check out the Reading Complete Package and give your child the best start possible!