reading problem

We are a homeschooling family with 3 sons. Ages 13, 11 and 9. We have always homeschooled. At the moment I feel completely burnt out, as our youngest, 9, still cannot read. This year I have spent everyday, sometimesup to 2 hours one on one with him, to the detriment of our older sons. I feel like nothing was accomplished and am at a point of despair. School has become something nobody looks forward to, especiially our youngest. Our school year ends in December and if you were to ask what they enjoyed the most of the year, they would struggle to think of something.

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Mar 04, 2011
Learning to Read can be frustrating
by: Belinda (Lifestyle-Homeschool)

I think we spend too much emotional energy teaching our children to read. It can be a long journey for some kids and if we don't relax then both child and parent can't enjoy the journey.

My oldest two read early and it wasn't hard to teach them. My younger two - different story.

Nomi didn't learn to read till she was about 9. She showed all the readiness signs around 5 and so we began lessons. I hit a brick wall - she just wasn't getting it so I dropped phonics for a while. A bit later on I picked it up again - I repeated this patten till she was reading. I even tried a few different phonics programmes with her, trying to match her learning style. Reality was though - she wasn't ready to read.

Daniel has been even longer journey though there are some learning difficulties there as well. He so much wanted to read that I started him around the 5yo mark, though he didn't start to read till 11yo. Once again, we did little bits, let it go, returned to it, let it go, returned to it etc. till it clicked with him.

I do believe in short lessons and finishing on a successful not rather than an exhausted note. In my mind if they aren't going to get it in 15minutes, they aren't going to get it today even if I spend another hour. Learning to read is exhausting - we need to give it to them in little bits.

I also believe that there is more to school than learning to read (though, yes, it is important and we want all our kids to read) but if the process begins to affect relationships and attitudes to learning - then things are out of balance.

In your situation, I would back off - do 15min of learning to read, and then make the rest of the day about something else. Make books and reading fun - that means, lots of reading aloud to the boys, and interacting with the stories.

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