Did you know that March is Readers’ Month? Reading is one of the fundamental skills children learn in school. Yet many little school children can make a big deal. What do children most often struggle with, when is it time to turn to an expert and how not to make reading ugly? Explains a special pedagogue.
Reading problems very often occur at the very beginning of the course, that is to say for the youngest during the first months of schooling. If the children themselves have gaps in the basics and do not “understand” at first, they will have difficulty reading and will no longer understand the next substance.
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If a child does not learn to read correctly, it will prevent him from continuing his studies later on, because if he does not recognize and cannot read letters correctly and then form words and sentences from them, he will not has more room to understand the meaning of what he read. Therefore, he really cannot learn anything.
As PhDr. Eva Šimotová, psychologist and specialized pedagogue
What are some common reasons a first grader is unable to read and struggles with letters?
The causes can be varied. This is largely due to persistent speech defects, such as incorrect pronunciation of certain sounds, or even more serious types of impaired communication skills, perceptual difficulties (deficiencies in visual perception and hearing, spatial orientation or memory), as well as inappropriate learning. – teaching pace too fast, teaching method unsatisfactory, etc. Academic immaturity can also be influenced, when the student lacks the necessary motivation and other necessary work characteristics such as the ability to engage the will, sustain attention, etc.
For how long can reading difficulties be considered a “slower” development and when is a more serious problem suspected?
The difficulties associated with the increase in study programs and the increasing demands of teaching become more noticeable. They also present themselves in relation to their peers. At the same time, it is necessary to keep in mind that each child is different and has their own pace in acquiring reading skills. Intellectual equipment, family background, and thus different support in learning and subsequent practice, intensity of motivation and interest in reading also play a role. In general, however, if it is indeed a more serious problem in terms of the specific learning disability suspected, it is often revealed during the first years of schooling.
How can I make reading more pleasant and attractive for my child, how can I, as a parent, help and support him so that he does not object to reading?
The relationship to reading is established much earlier than when starting school. It is important to know whether the family itself supports such an interest, from early childhood, that is, whether parents read to children at home, whether they buy children’s books and magazines, build the child’s library at home, if they themselves are readers, if they visit the municipal library…
In the teaching itself, it then seems effective to work with her together so that the child feels that the interest in learning to read is reciprocal, that he has support from the parent. I do not recommend training in reading by exercises, by constantly repeating the same text, when the child has a natural tendency to learn the text by heart. Moreover, it leads to resistance and aversion. For example, it is useful to take turns reading with a parent, where each reads a sentence, or to use texts where a word is replaced by an image. In addition to syllables and reading books, you can also use children’s books and magazines, which are thematically appealing to children. Ideally, they should be age appropriate, in terms of font size, word difficulty, text length, but also illustrations.
When is it possible to diagnose possible learning disabilities, such as dyslexia and dysgraphia?
Specific learning disabilities are diagnosed at school age, not earlier. The child must already be involved in the process of learning to read and write. Nowadays, thanks to the growing awareness of teachers, it is common for reading or writing disorders to be detected, for example, at the end of the first class or during the second year. However, even in preschool age, certain risk factors can be observed that may refer to a possible disorder – difficulties with laterality, visual and auditory discrimination, the presence of a speech disorder or a deficit disorder of attention, incorrect motor movement of eye movements and more.
March – Readers’ Month
March is no longer just a month for books, but also a month for readers. The Czech Libraries project, focusing on reading and readers, is taking place for the thirteenth time and those interested can expect a number of literary and cultural events and a rich accompanying program in the libraries of the whole Czech Republic. Learn more about brezenmesicctenaru.cz
Children read, survey showed
In the age of modern technology, fewer and fewer children (including adults) are picking up the book. The relationship between children and their teachers was followed by a survey of the reading aids project. According to them, pupils and students most often access books through compulsory school reading. According to parents, more than 68% of children read more than the required books, but only a quarter of them read regularly.
Children are more attracted to adventure books (38%), comic books (30%) or fairy tales (27%). But their choice depends on the age of the reader. Primary students tend to look for a fairy tale (60%). After adventure stories and comic strips, there are 2nd primary and high school students. Educational books are also more popular with them.
The Reading Project helps, which has been encouraging children to read for ten years, has decided to motivate young readers with a reward. They will receive 50 crowns for each book read. However, they cannot use the money for themselves, but donate it to one of the charity projects. Reading thus helps children to develop a sense of charity at the same time. And that motivation works. In ten years, nearly 280,000 children have taken part in the Reading Helps project, distributing CZK 54,666,600 to the projects of 572 charities. The children responded most quickly to the support of the Prague Zoo after the 2013 floods. They counted the amount of 100,000 crowns in less than four days.
Every primary or secondary student can participate in the project. He chooses a book from the list on the ctenipomaha.cz website and after reading it he has to pass a short test, for which he will receive a reward of 50 CZK.