Q: Is it possible?
A: Yes it is.
The Cult of Pedagogy explored this topic from an opposite point of view, but the challenge is a formidable one, especially if a reader is dyslexic.
GOOD THINGS TO DO
- Allow kids time to read for enjoyment. Let them choose their books or help them choose their books if they can’t decide what to read.
- Allow kids to choose books above their reading level and let them know about reading along listening to an audiobook or using a scanning pen if it might help them decode words.
- Suggest books that they may love or at least get hooked on. We’ve heard so many stories of kids falling in love with Harry Potter or Geronimo Stilton. Read the first chapter or chapters aloud first with them – it will make the rest
of the book easier and more enjoyable. Recognize that for dyslexic kids, their intellectual level may be several levels about their read aloud level.
- Aim high. Don’t lowball their intelligence. Many students love plot and character complexity, the sound of beautiful words, and new perspectives.
- Celebrate ear readers. You can love books by listening as well as reading by eye
- Resist the temptation to pair reading with something else – whether it’s a worksheet, a quiz, book report, or reading log, or something else. Encourage a love of reading for its own sake.
- Create a positive and individualistic view of reading in the classroom. Design reachable reading goals for each student and include in student IEPs to increase the likelihood that the student will not be punished for missing unreasonable expectations in future years.
- Having students recognize their own accomplishments is all right – but just be aware that data from ‘flow‘ researcher Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi suggests that reading for one’s own satisfaction and value will be more likely to foster
a love of reading than any external ‘carrots’ dangled by well-meaning relatives or teachers.