Any ideas on how to help your child better understand what he is reading?

Heather - posted on 11/10/2009 ( 15 moms have responded )

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My oldest is having trouble understanding what he read and is having trouble with reading. I suspect he had ADD and dyslexia. I am currently in the process of getting him tested but need help in the mean time. He is falling behind in his class and is getting frustrated. Thank you for your insight.

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Susie - posted on 11/10/2009

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My Grandaughter since she was a baby I knew she was adhd, and I have read many articles and being in the medical profession, I have seen children put on medicine that did not need to be, But Unfourtunatley My grandaughter is going to have to be put on something, She is disrupting the classroom, and she is only in the first grade, What the school does not know is that I know all about the 504 rule, which means That a child has a defect that is not noticable! There are parent advocates available to help the parents with the public school district.Tthey do not want you to know about this because it take tax money away to get the special care your child needs! If you do not want them to they cannot pull your child out of class, they have to go as far an hiring an aide to help with your Child, they are playing there little games and paddling my Grandaughter with me present!Now do not get me wrong I do not believe in sparring the rod, But They are not going to use my grandaughter as an example to the other children, I take it this way, If your child had diabetes, would you not give them insulin! Of course you would, when a child is adhd or add the neurotranmitters are not connecting, and there work suffers, I went through all this with my youngest Daughter! they were not going to test her until she was in the 3rd grade, and that was to late! I documented 12 different letters, phone conversations wit the principle, Which I told her parenting was not a popularity contest and I was not out to win her votes, that my Job on this earth was to give my children the best education availabe to them, she is graduating from University Of Texas, With her BS In pyscholgy in The Fall of 2010! I had to fight tooth and nail to get something done, in fact the school district got fined 4500 dollars, because I called an ard meeting and they did not do it in the approiate time set, Now was I popular with the school NO, was there retailiationn on my children NO, So If you need any guidance I have some of the answers because a dear friend of mine was a counselar at the school and told me what to do , Just ask and I will see if I can find answers, susie James Kilgore Texas

Rhonda - posted on 11/10/2009

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Maybe if you read what he reads first so that you can then discuss the material, asking pointed questions. I do that with my son and although he doesn't have any difficulty reading, it helps me know if he has in fact read things and I can also use that time to have discussions with him and I know that he is understanding what he's reading. Also reading together might help. Also maybe let him read stuff below his grade level so that it's easier for him to build confidence, that sounds like a step backwards but at least that will make reading easier which will possibly encourage him to read more. Hope that is somewhat helpful.

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My son has Aspergers and ADHD and also had trouble with comprehension in reading. He could read far beyond his years but not always comprehend the meaning. What we were told is to ask LOTS of questions after reading each book. Ask who the characters were, where it took place, what was the problem in the story, how was it fixed. Also ask what happened in the beginning, middle, and end. This greatly improved his comprehension because he started looking for these types of answers as he was reading. Hope that helps!

Justine - posted on 11/10/2009

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I have had those same problems since i was a kid, and now my brother is finding the same thing (and hes 19). i never went to drugs to solve it, my mom took me to a naturopath and they put me on fish oil, something with omega-3 and dha. it did wonders. especially if it is add, not adhd, fish oil is the greatest thing and non-pharm.

also, to help him understand what he is reading, when he is reading at home try having him act out what hes reading, or drawing a picture, or something creative that feeds into his abilities. that way he really tries to keep focused because he will be doing something he likes and is good at, which really helps with comprehension. its outside the box, but not all kids fit in the box.

Debbie - posted on 11/10/2009

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Heather, First you need to understand he is having trouble. Is it in seeing the words in order, comprehension of the words or phase, sometimes they read to fast and don't pay attention.



What I did to help my son was had him read the work to me. Explain it to me because "I needed to learn how to do it" in order to help him. This was a little frustrating as he had to SLOW down to read to me. However, I found that he didn't understand a few words. He also was struggling with order recall because he was trying to rush his reading.



Now we know what to work on. We bought programs to teach reading techniques. "hooked on Phonics" "reading phonics" games that learn phonic words and started a family game nite on Friday. We also had a new rule of reading to mom or dad every nite before bed for 1/2 hour. We chose a large book and he read slowly to us. We actually started with Harry Potter before it became popular! lol I hope this helps give you some hides.

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Tracey - posted on 10/12/2012

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Thanks for that information...at my son school they want to pull him out to go to a certain class for help,so with different assignments he's being pulled out. So help me understand they can hire teachers aide to help them?

Heather - posted on 11/10/2009

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Thank you all for responding to my question. It is very enlightening to see all the suggestions. I talked to his teacher today and she suggested I write a letter to express my concerns and what I would like done. She said that sometimes a letter works better than talking. Well I am going to write the letter and let you all know what happens from there, again thank you all

Heather - posted on 11/10/2009

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Justine,
That is the other problem he has, he has a hard time getting his ideas from his mind onto paper. He can talk a mile a minute about what he has thought about but getting it down on paper is like pulling teeth. I will try acting it out though

Tanya - posted on 11/10/2009

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What i do is i get my kids to act out the book we are reading and then we talk about it after we are done with the acting

Debbie - posted on 11/10/2009

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My son also used those math and phonic rap music tapes to listen to in the car and on his player. He memorized his tables and sounds this way. It did seem to help him, we also found some on video for him to watch and hear. Some kids are audio/visual learners, that is what my son is. He needs both in order to learn.

Tonia - posted on 11/10/2009

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My daughter actually was struggling with reading comprehension and reading in general. So once I realized this I got these DVD's that helped her and are already helping her younger siblings learn it.
Leap Frog...
-Letter Factory (She already knew this but it is best to start at the begging) Pre-School
-Lets Go to School-Pre-K
-Learn to Read -Kindergarten
-Words Factory -K-1st
-Words Factory 2 -1st

I looked to Amazon to find these great educational videos!

Plus since she was having difficulty she was in the schools Reading Program...
Well every night they send her home with books that she is instructed to read to me. Well at first she struggled and it was hard but she has improved dramatically!

I recommend both the DVDs and reading at their level books. Ask your school if they have some phonics books, they probably do.
The DVDs are good because they offer explanations that are at their level on reading sounds and comprehension. The books are good because it is direct hands on experience! She also has a phonics set that she has been using a little bit too, you can find those on like Craigslist if you don't want to pay full price I have seen them on there.

P.S. Last year my daughters Kindergarten teacher approached me suggesting we test her for HDHD well I agreed to the testing the results came back that she did have it according to the tests. Well they suggested I bring her to the doctor for meds. Well I decided I would not do that, I wanted to hold off! I looked up ways to help guide their attention to the topic. The teacher also said she thought she should not go to 1st grade right away. Well I decided that I would move her on. See what that teacher did not tell me that I already knew is they need so many kids in these programs to get gov. funded and grants. Well I went to my daughters class and volunteered last year come to realize that she had a Para/T.A. on her side constant,along with like 4 other children. Well after observing from my opinion there was only one child that really appeared to need that (as far as having like a real obvious behavioral disorder)
you know the common thread I seen about My daughter and these kids they were all very social out going children. Well she went to first grade this year and immediately I told the teacher about the previous teachers concerns, but I told her hey if you have a concern I don't want to hear about it at conferences I want to hear about it all right away! Well there has been no issue! In fact at her first conferences the teacher said she was doing great!

So my whole point in telling you that story was simply to tell you that if someone else is suggesting this and you have a doubt take a step back and examine what their motivations might be. I believe some children do have but I think some that are lively and don't fit in the norm get mis-diagnosed too!

Good luck with the phonics!

Lora - posted on 11/10/2009

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My name is Lora and my son is having the same problem. We are meeting with the school tomorrow and I am hoping to have him tested soon. He is in 1st grade and we are struggling every night trying to get his reading done for school. If you find anything helpful please let me know.

Sigrid - posted on 11/10/2009

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I'll suggest that you read it first and then he has to repeat it by reading it by himself ... Spelling is also very important and given the fact that you think he has ADD, maybe make it interesting by using scrabble letters to spell the word he doesn't understand, correctly. When you do this in a playful way, it will be less difficult for him to keep his attention.

Sharon - posted on 11/10/2009

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I found with my younger kids it was a matter of word definition. We would read the subject/line/paragraph together. Sometimes reading it aloud helps. If that doesn't do it I ask them what about it they don't understand. If its a word, then we go from there. If thats not it we try to reorder the sentence.

Good luck!

Nina - posted on 11/10/2009

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Hi Heather. I'm no expert but could give my opinion. How old is your child? My daughter is 10 and struggling a bit too. At this point I think she is just too busy to allow herself the quiet time. I read before bed each night and encourage her to read with me. Sometimes she does, sometimes not. Have you tried reading to him and then asking him questions? If he is not doing the reading and still doesnt understand it might eliminate dyslexia?

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