I have been blessed with two awesome sons. Being a former teacher, literacy specialist and all-round lover of books I thought my kids would love reading too. Wrong. Both boys have had their fair share of loathing reading. It has been touch and go during their junior schooling with my constant worry that they will fall off the reading tightrope headlong into a pit of hating reading and becoming non-readers.
As I write this I think we are doing OK. Their reading is progressing, they are happy to read (mostly) and we have found some thrilling stories to keep them enthused. Oh, plus they have incredibly supportive teachers. Yes, we are blessed.
I talk to other mums who have similar fears. From my personal experience, this is what I tell them… Try not to freak out (easier said than done). Take the stress out of reading and always make it fun. If it becomes stressful put the book away. Read every day, even if for just a few minutes. Cuddle up when you read. Take your kids to bookstores and the library often. Stuff books in every nook and cranny of the house and car. Smile, laugh, read. Find stories that make your kid’s heart sing. Try not to freak out.
Sometimes tears well in the other mum’s eyes. Mine too. I know how scary it can be. Then I remember to say something I have come to know… Because you care deeply about your child’s reading, there is no chance they will fail. If you do everything in your power to foster their love of reading your child will read. Keep reading and keep asking questions.