Tuesday, April 11, 2006
Parent to Parent: Boy Reader
Reading, writing and arithmetic are basic subjects every child learns in school. But for boys in particular reading offers some unique challenges. Tonight, Dr. Debbie shows us how to help your son be a better reader.
WSVN--Six-and-a-half year old Blake Finkelstein is a typical little boy.
This first grader loves to splash around in the pool, play card and video games and run around.
So at the start of this school year, he had a hard time focusing and learning to read his ABC's.
Leslie Finkelstein: "My son came home from school and said 'Mommy, I'm dumb', I can't read, I can't do math, the other kids can do it and I can't do it, and that broke my heart."
Blake couldn't read.
And he's not alone.
Both stereotypes and statistics show because boys are inundated with electronics and sports, they may be less likely to be eager readers.
Lynn Martinez: "So is it harder for boys to read?"
Dr. Debbie Glasser: "It's not that it's harder for boys to read but what's interesting is very often, the people who choose books for young boys tend to be women."
Dr. Debbie: "Society does send some subtle and sometimes not so subtle messages that reading might be a girl thing."
But Dr. Debbie says you can encourage a love of reading.
Start by looking for reading material with characters that interest your son, even if it's not a book.
Dr. Debbie: "Your son might first enjoy a comic book, a magazine, a portion of the newspaper that interests him, the sports section for example. Any reading is good reading. Encourage your child to read and over time books will follow."
Expose your son to books by taking him to the bookstore or library.
But don't pressure your child, instead be patient and encouraging.
You can do that by being a good role model.
Encourage the men in your child's life to set that example.
Dr. Debbie: "They need to see that this is not just a girl activity."
Start reading to your child early, even as baby's.
And if your son is still having trouble, seek help.
That's what Leslie did -- with the help of Scott Schilling's "at home tutor".
With the use of flash cards, videos, puzzles and games...
Scott Schilling: "We'll get into the visual part of the brain, we'll get them to pause, we'll get them calm, and then they'll be ready to do their schoolwork."
Parents can teach their own children how to concentrate and recognize words, which is the first step on the road to reading.
Scott Schilling: "That's what it's all about building basic skills, boosting confidence."
Blake Finkelstein: "The rocket flies very far."
Blake can now sit still and focus.
He loves to read all kinds of books, and his mom couldn't be any prouder.
Leslie Finkelstein: "He started developing confidence and now he's thriving. He's reading on a 2 level, where he wasn't even reading at all when he went into first grade. It's just an amazing feeling."
Dr. Debbie says you can also encourage boys to read by starting a son and parent book club, where the boys get to choose the book each month.
FOR MORE INFORMATION:
IF YOU HAVE A CONCERN DR. DEBBIE CAN HELP YOU WITH E-MAIL US AT:
DR. DEBBIE GLASSER'S WEBSITE:
AT HOME TUTOR: