Thursday, August 16, 2012

Reading Problems: Prevention is Key

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Mem Fox reading to children
In  Reading Magic , Mem Fox discusses reading problems in chapter three. She says reading problems are hard to fix, but easy to prevent.She also says prevention happens long before school starts--that the first day is almost too late "Scary as that is" (page 13).

The idea of prevention being ideal makes sense to me. That is a trend we see common in everything from parenting, to dog training, to weeds. The natural question is then how do you prevent?

You read to your children. Fox recommends three books a day--one favorite, one familiar, and one new (but that the same story three times in a row is okay, too). She says a child needs to have been read 1000 books before he/she can learn to read. That might sound like a lot, but if you do the math, that is three books a day for just over 333 days, so you could easily say a year of reading three books a day to your child and your child will be ready to learn to read.

Fox also cautions against using television as a replacement for books. 

So it is pretty simple, just like she said. Easy to prevent. Read to your child daily and don't let television replace reading time. I think we can all manage that!

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