Stories From The Tolbert Home

Sunday, May 15, 2016

My Child Hates to Read {I've been there, let me help}

           Help, my child hates reading. I wrote about reading above your child's reading level awhile back. As a means to getting your child more hooked into the wonderful outlet called reading. I am no expert in this area but I have seen much success in our home when it comes to teaching a child to love to read and I love to share about it.

          What about when you have tried all you can do to help them and they STILL HATE TO READ. I get it, it can be exhausting. I failed to go into detail of the many months leading up to my final "Ive had enough" moment. My oldest daughter is quite stubborn...don't even know how she has that kind of streak in her..{awkward silence, moving on}.

          She loved when I read to her and such but getting her to simply enjoy it was another story.

          Before you start rolling your eyes and giving up on me let me declare I am NOT against TV. But let's be honest. I was a younger than most mother and TV was how I was able to get anything done! I did school while my daughter sat drooling listening to Dora or Blue's Clues. It was fantastic.
She learned quite a lot from television and it really was a blessing to help me get a few things done.
I decided to go amish. I decided we needed a break from TV. It was January and it felt a bit extreme but I told her we were going to go 30 days with no shows. It was very difficult at first...for me more than her HA.

         What I observed was it took weeks to re-train her brain. Television in all its color and glory tells the story for the child. There is not too much thinking that needs to be done. When a child sits down with a book and it has no pictures there is a struggle for them to imagine the story. Maybe you have a child that was born making those pictures up in their mind, mine was not. So I saw much frustration.

        What came out of that month {towards the end of course} was beautiful. I finally saw her sneaking away into a corner reading a book and asking to stay up just a little longer to finish. She stopped asking me to turn on a movie so I decided I would let it slide a little longer. I think she made it about 6 weeks.

          She developed something in that short span of time. Her confidence in her own ability to read grew, her hyper activity during trying to sit still and read left, and she was able to truly enjoy her time! Why do I push so hard for a child to love reading? What is so wrong with television? I cannot stress enough the importance of reading. When they are in school and having to sit down and read pages and pages of rather boring material it can be quite difficult if they do not read much at home at all. It sharpens the brain, broadens vocabulary and gives them a place to escape.

          Every so often I do my "amish" days and tell them no tv time. They are still children and would love to veg out on the couch and watch their favorite shows all day, but you see they are able to read and enjoy it very much now that we limit their time on the TV. I allow about an hour or so a day and I try to have a day or 2 a week where we just do games instead.

During your detox time here are some fun ways to distract them from their normal tv time

Tea! Girls and boys enjoy quiet sit downs with mom and it is an easy way to sip on something while listening to a good book.

Make a new recipe. If you need to get things done, turn your head and let them at it in the kitchen! If they can read, they can attempt a recipe. I suggest pancakes!



Read to themselves, the dog, a sibling, or a stuffed animal

Make a reward system for every time they choose to grab a book or something rather than a video game or tv

Outside time!

I know my kiddos well enough to know that too much tv time really affects their mood. They get very irritable on the days I allow too much. Yet if I let them read for hours they can walk away from the book and not be so groggy. Find your child's limit and help them learn self control and challenge their mind! You will not regret it.

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