Understanding Reading Difficulties

"My child wants to read so badly, but he struggles so much. He is embarrassed because his brothers and sisters, even the younger ones, can read better than he can. We have tried so many curriculums. They have worked for my other children, but not for him."

As a reading specialist, and coordinator for HSLDA's Struggling Learner program, this is a statement I hear on a daily basis from homeschooling moms. What is really hampering this child's ability to read? Can a mom figure this out at home, or does she always need professional help for this?

My experience, after working with thousands of homeschooling families in my clinic, is that homeschooling parents are very capable of tackling this job successfully at home, once they have the correct information to work with. In this brief article, we will discuss the process that I teach parents to determine where their child's reading problem lies, and what to do about it.

Why is reading easier for the other children in the family? We are going to look at the Four Reading Components. If all of the four components are present and functioning, then reading is easy. That is what is happening with your other children. For this child, one or more of the components is missing. It is important for parents to have the tools to determine where their child's reading difficulty lies, so that they can wisely spend their time and money on the targeted areas, rather than just doing more reading, with comprehension questions.

The Four Reading Components

This resource is provided by the Home School Legal Defense Association's Struggling Learner's newsletter as a service to the homeschooling community.

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Dianne Craft, MA, CNHP, a speaker and former homeschool mom, discovered that there are many bright, hardworking, homeschooled children who have to work way too hard to learn! As she speaks with homeschool leaders across the country, she hears that their fastest growing...