I woke up the other day thinking about our homeschool plans for next year. Of the two students I’m still homeschooling, one is a reluctant reader and one is resistant.
Since I love books and reading, it makes me a little sad that I haven’t been able to instill that same love in my kids. So, I started thinking about how to renew my efforts. Learning to read was a bit of a chore for both of them, so it stands to reason that reading for pleasure might not be high on their list.
They do like being read to. I read to our kids, even when they are in middle school and high school. Yes, they read to themselves too, but we love a good read-aloud. I love this article about the benefits of reading to older kids. But I also want them to grow up to be readers. Maybe not nose-in-a-book-all-the-time type readers, but hopefully, several books in a year.
That led me to google something like “making readers out of kids who hate to read”. And that led me to several interesting articles.
First, on Dot Complicated I found a post on using audio books for kids who hate reading. That seems like an obvious idea, but it’s one I’ve never pursued.
That led me to learn more about Immersion Reading on Audible and Kindle. With Immersion Reading, you can read and listen to a professional narration at the same time. And the really cool thing is that the words and phrases are highlighted as they are read. That means that kids can follow along easily with the reading and improve their skills as they go. It makes it possible for them to read books that are at a higher reading level than what they can handle on their own.
Of course, I had to google to find out if Immersion Reading really helps improve reading skills. Here are a few things I found:
A story of how a dyslexic woman uses a Kindle to help her with reading. This doesn’t address the latest technology, but it has some interesting tips.
Later, I found this post on book recommendations for tweens on The Art of Simple.
There are some excellent book choices there. I decided to start with Peter Nimble and His Fantastic Eyes. I started reading the book myself and it is fantastic! I knew it would hook the kids. It certainly hooked me. This is a book kids will enjoy and adults will too. It’s an action packed, page turning adventure and much more too.
We loaded the Kindle version, along with the Audible recording and the kids started reading yesterday. So far, I’d say we have success. Only my younger child is using the narration, but both kids are enjoying the book and moving forward willingly.
My goal for this summer is to provide great stories for them to read so they get a taste of how fun reading can be. I’d love your book recommendations! And if you’ve used Immersion Reading for your student, I’d like to know how that has worked out.
Now, I’ve got to get back to my book and find out what happens next to Peter Nimble!