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Friday, April 15, 2005



I don't have children. If I did, I'd be reading with them, daily, because that's how I was raised, and I think it's crucial to pass on love of the written word.

The idea of so many nonreaders terrifies me.


Spelling isn't helping the reading problem.

Today's educational atmosphere encourages kids to use their creative skills by not correcting their writing and allowing kids to spell words however they think it's spelled.

The end result is ..they dont' know how to spell, and if they are consistantly mispelling a word ... then doesn't it stand to reason that they would not recognise that word when they went to read it because it isn't spelled like they spell it?

So much is done to day in the name of not harming their tender self esteems and in the long run, they're not learning what success and failure, and hard work is and they are not learing a work ethic and in the long run ..their self esteem is truely suffering!

Sorry ... just the rantings of a parent of a special needs child who can only fight so much of the system.


Miss Meliss is correct -- reading to kids is one way of passing on the love of reading, the idea that the words on the page spark your imagination.

If being read to was enough to create good readers, why Allison would have been reading chapter books in first grade. Oops. Her little neurological deficit -- or non-standardization -- meant that she needed direct, explicit instruction to master reading. She got it. The kids who are not learning to read, in their millions, aren't getitng the kind of instruction they need.

Peggikaye is correct also (although spelling is less of a bugabear for me*). She encapsulates the whole self-esteem instead of pleasure-of-mastery thing in a nutshell.

*The spelling thing -- many of our forebears didn't spell consistently, but could read fluently. It depends on the type of error.


This has NOTHING to do with this topic, I merely wanted to comment that I'd never noticed the Four Principles on your sidebar before, and just read them. . . wow. What beauty and elegance and simple Truth is in those words.


I get your spelling point ... I consistantly mix up the ie and ant ent words. But, I can read them.

I think for a neurotypical child, the spelling plays a roll, but not as big of a roll as it does for the learning disabled child like my son. A few years of mispelling will not have the impact on reading that many years of massive mispellings will.

The Four principals, love them!
Number 3 is hard for me to read. As a parent who lives on social security disability (Lupus/myasthenia gravis) and has a low income and trying to raise 2 teenaged boys in a wealthy school district and fairly well off church, I often have to remind myself that God has given me equal responsibility to the community inspite of lack of funds.
The "you're no better because you have money" is a two way coin.
It also means "you're no worse because you are poor"
that means you have a responsibility to function inspite of health ..inspite of income ... inspite of struggles.

Tom Cunliffe

Liz, I am so concerned about this problem, which is as prevalent over here in the UK. Reading is a quiet activity requiring the reader to draw in on her/himself and find an occupation in the mind which does not depend on external stimulation. The competition from instant gratification alternatives is just too much for many children. I am delighted however at the success of Harry Potter which is leading many children back to the world of imagination and literary fulfilment - and also the satifaction that derives from reading really long books.

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