My secret recipe for turning struggling readers into awesome readers quickly! - Wealthy N Wise Woman (2024)

Have you ever wondered why some kids learn to read quickly and easily and other kids struggle?

Researchers have spent years trying to determine the “why” behind struggling readers. The assumption, when it comes to reading, is that there must be one “system” or “method” that will help students build this skill.

So…then why do so many research studies on methods for teaching reading produce basically no valuable data?

The truth is that reading isn’t just about knowing how to sound out words or being able to memorize a billion words from the dictionary. (Yes.. that’s a honest-to-God teaching method.)

It’s actually about both…

It’s like playing the piano. How do these amazing piano players look at these little drawings placed on a series of lines and somehow translate that to placing their fingers in the correct location?

Even more interesting, how do they do that so quickly that they stay on beat and in time?

The simple answer is muscle memory. They’ve done it so many times that their brain interprets that image on that specific line as a movement.

But when they first get started, they have to slow down and think hard about those notes. It takes a lot of effort and “figuring out.”

In the EXACT SAME WAY, learning to read requires a fair amount of muscle memory. Muscle memory that can only be developed through a lot of time and sounding out.

But getting a struggling reader to practice, practice, practice can sometimes feel like pulling teeth.

Fortunately, with the resources at our disposal these days, it’s not actually all that hard to make reading feel fun and exciting for kids.

Below, I’m sharing my TOP 3 SECRETS that turned my struggling reader into an above average reader in only 6 months

#1 – Listen to Audiobooks as a family.

Now, you may be wondering how audiobooks help with reading. But the truth is, one of the most important parts of learning to read is learning to LOVE books and stories.

I mean, when was the last time you ever wanted to read an encyclopedia. But you better believe that you’ve wanted to read a magazine or watch your favorite show on Netflix. Why? Well, because you know that what’s inside is interesting and entertaining!

School teachers have a bad habit of turning reading into a “must do” (and sort of boring) activity. So kids often look at reading as a chore instead of an exciting adventure. Getting into a few good audiobooks together can help change this perception!

# 2 – Ask them to help you with things that require reading

Kids love to help you. It makes them feel important and needed. So when you ask them to find you the can in the cabinet that says “Lima Beans,” they’ll try… even if they hate to read.

We take this one a step farther and make our grocery trips into a bit of a game. Each kid gets a list that they have to read and then find the items. The child that finds the most is the winner and gets to pick the candy treat they’ll all get at checkout!

#3 (My kid’s favorite) Gamify their learning

Remember that learning to read requires a ton of repetition. And what’s the ONE THING that most kids would do for hours on end?

YUP… video games.

Finding a great video game that teaches kids to read can be a bit tricky, but if you can find one that your kids are interested in, you’ll find that reading becomes “easy” for them pretty quickly!

Our favorite gamified reading app ( by far) is The Night Zookeeper!

We tried finding a “gamified” reading experience for a long time. But a lot of the options out there were just a bit too “babified” for them.

They needed the skills being taught, but they wanted a more exciting game to play. When we found Night Zookeeper, my kids were so invested in the storyline they would rush home from school to play!

They had no idea that they were actually learning to read along the way!

If you’re looking for a good app for teaching your kids reading, you can grab a free trial of the Night Zookeeper here.

You’ll also get 50% off of a full year if you decide to keep it… and I think you will! (It’s seriously awesome.)

They have multiple stories that the kids can “read” (they do actually have to read.. but it feels more like they are playing.

In fact, it feels a bit like being in control of a tv show! That’s probably why my kids love it so much.

We hit the full screen button on the stories and they head off onto an adventure, trying to save the zoo from evil enemies.

Honestly, it’s probably one of the best gamified learning apps we’ve ever tried!

When kids are ENJOYING something, they’ll do it over and over again. That’s why this is probably the most effective thing you can do to help your struggling reader.

So jump over to their site and grab a free trial. Let your kids click around a bit in the game and just see how things go!

My secret recipe for turning struggling readers into awesome readers quickly! - Wealthy N Wise Woman (1)
My secret recipe for turning struggling readers into awesome readers quickly! - Wealthy N Wise Woman (2024)


What are the three types of struggling readers? ›

Researchers have identified three main types of struggling readers. There are students with specific-word, specific-comprehension and mixed-reading difficulties. Teachers can help students access books with vocabulary that matches their ability by employing popular strategies to help struggling readers.

How do you help an older struggling reader? ›

To help older students restore foundational reading skills, parents and educators can utilize the following strategies:
  1. Graphic organizers.
  2. Small groups phonics instruction.
  3. Personalized instruction to meet each student's history and needs, with an emphasis on vocabulary and writing.

How do you teach a struggling reader to read? ›

7 strategies to use with struggling readers
  1. SCAFFOLD. For any struggling reading, the feeling of being able to achieve success is key. ...
  2. BE INCLUSIVE. ...

How do poor readers read? ›

Typical poor readers rarely prepare before reading. They often begin to read without setting goals. They seldom consider how best to read a particular type of text. During reading, poor readers may have difficulty decoding, and so have difficulty reading the words of their texts accurately.

What struggling readers really need? ›

More than anyone else, our struggling readers need books they can read, understand, and enjoy. And just as importantly, they have to have choice within those books. For this to happen, the classroom has to have a good variety of books, but it also has to be a place that values lots of kinds of books.

What is the best intervention for struggling readers? ›

The most commonly used strategy to improve reading fluency is the reading and rereading of familiar texts. Opportunities to read aloud, with guidance from teachers, peers or parents, are also associated with the development of fluent reading.

What is the reading program for older struggling readers? ›

The Wilson Reading System was designed to help support students in 2nd through 12th grade with reading difficulties. It can be used with students with dyslexia, as well as other reading challenges. Adults with reading deficiencies have also seen success by using the program.

How do you build confidence in struggling readers? ›

Here are five things we did to encourage my son to read aloud, and I would suggest them to any parent facing a similar situation at home.
  1. Don't push your child. ...
  2. Give him privacy. ...
  3. Read to a different audience. ...
  4. Let your child see you struggle with words. ...
  5. Don't overcorrect.

Do struggling readers catch up? ›

Reading scientists have long recognized that students who fall behind in kindergarten or first grade are also likely to never catch up—unless they receive before third grade the kind of intensive interventions that third-grade promotion gates are intended to trigger.

What helps reading get easier? ›

Reading Strategies & Tips
  • Schedule time to read. Reading is an easy thing to put off because there is often no exact due date. ...
  • Set yourself up for success. Pick a location that is conducive to reading. ...
  • Choose and use a specific reading strategy. ...
  • Monitor your comprehension. ...
  • Take notes as you read.

What is the Big 5 in reading? ›

Effective reading instruction incorporates five components including phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary, and reading comprehension.

What is the root cause of poor reading? ›

Some major causes of poor reading ability are difficult text, ADHD, dyslexia, limited vocabulary, working memory deficit, and more. People may also have trouble with comprehension due to boredom or disinterest in what they are reading. Speed reading has proven to help deal with poor reading and comprehension skills.

What is Hyperlexia? ›

Definition. Hyperlexia is when a child can read at levels far beyond those expected for their age. “Hyper” means better than, while “lexia” means reading or language. A child with hyperlexia might figure out how to decode or sound out words very quickly, but not understand or comprehend most of what they're reading.

Why so many American kids are struggling to read? ›

In short, children raised in poverty, those with limited proficiency in English, those from homes where the parents' reading levels and practices are low, and those with speech, language, and hearing handicaps are at increased risk of reading failure.

What are the 3 main type of reading strategies? ›

There are three different styles of reading academic texts: skimming, scanning, and in-depth reading. Each is used for a specific purpose.

What are the three types of readers? ›

Jenifer Ashby The three types of readers are; the developing reading, dormant reader, and lastly the underground reader.

What are the 3 levels of reading of reading development? ›

A handy guide to the three levels of reading: literal, inferential and evaluative. Information and resources about reading on, between and beyond the lines.

What is the 3 read approach to literacy? ›

The first read children will be read the whole story, second read is where children will have conversations with the practitioners discussing the character, setting, action, problem and resolution within the story and the third read where children will be encouraged to make predictions about the story, make connections ...

Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Mr. See Jast

Last Updated:

Views: 6254

Rating: 4.4 / 5 (75 voted)

Reviews: 90% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Mr. See Jast

Birthday: 1999-07-30

Address: 8409 Megan Mountain, New Mathew, MT 44997-8193

Phone: +5023589614038

Job: Chief Executive

Hobby: Leather crafting, Flag Football, Candle making, Flying, Poi, Gunsmithing, Swimming

Introduction: My name is Mr. See Jast, I am a open, jolly, gorgeous, courageous, inexpensive, friendly, homely person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.