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How to help a 5 year old realise she wants/needs to read

(26 Posts)
Baylzma Thu 25-Oct-12 12:23:05

We are having a problem encouraging my 5 year old granddaughter to practice her reading at home. Last night she said she doesn't need to read because she wants to be an artist not a librarian! She was progressing very well last year and because of this was advanced to a harder group. Now she refuses to read to Mum or me. Has anyone encountered this problem and have any suggestions as to how we can help her please?

glammanana Thu 25-Oct-12 12:47:46

I'm of the opinion that a quiet word with her teacher would maybe help and ask if maybe she can be put back with her peer's from last year,if the children in this higher group are older than she is in years she just may feel a wee bit overwhelmed by the age difference,there is nothing to be lost if she is put back with her friends as her happiness and confidence are far far more important than achieving a higher grade and her being unhappy.
Go down the road of explaining that artists need to read so they can learn all about our famous artists of yesteryear,by the time she is 7/8yrs she will have a list so long you will be worn out with what she is going to be when she is grown up. Best of luck flowers

Elegran Thu 25-Oct-12 13:04:57

Cook something with her from a simple recipe, and keep asking questions "because your hands are all floury and you can't touch the book" How much sugar do I need? Does that say plain flour or self-raising? Should that be dates or raisins? Pitch the questions to suit her ability, of course, but demonstrate without preaching that reading is useful.

Artists have to read street names and tax forms just like the rest of us!

kittylester Thu 25-Oct-12 13:17:24

As * glamma* says mention it to the teacher and then ignore for a while ay home. She's obviously bright but and will come to no harm for a while. After all she is only 5 smile

Jodi Thu 25-Oct-12 14:14:47

bayizma I had exactly the same problem with my 5- year old grandson. He too cited future career options where he thought knowing how to read was not a requirement. Realising that there is a purpose helps, so * elegrans* suggestion of simple recipes is an excellent one and fun. With my grandson it has been reading pamphlets from local attractions about events such as Halloween, Bonfire Night and Christmas that kick started his interest again. And yes, mention it to the teacher.

absentgrana Thu 25-Oct-12 14:37:41

If you read a bedtime story in episodes over the course of a week, sooner or later she is going to want to know what happens next long before bedtime. I was reading an Enid Blyton book – either The Faraway Tree or The Wishing Chair – in this way to absentdaughter when she was about five. I walked into the sitting room one afternoon and there she was in classic pose on her tummy on the floor in front of the fire, knees bent and chin resting on hands totally immersed in the next chapter.

This doesn't get over the problem of not wanting to read as homework – why do they do this to five-year-olds – but does foster a love of reading.

vampirequeen Thu 25-Oct-12 14:39:08

Stop trying to get her to read books for a while and share comics with her instead. Talk about street signs and other print you see in the environment. Once you start to look you'll see it everywhere. Find out from the teacher which phonics phase she's's possible she's reached the complicated stuff at phase 5. Play computer games like with her. The more she thinks she's playing the less she thinks she's learning. Try the games on this site too.

Hope this helps.

absentgrana Thu 25-Oct-12 14:45:14

vampirequeen I think that was an excellent suggestion. I have great respect for teachers in general and have read the postings on Gransnet by ex-teachers and ex-head teachers with interest. Nevertheless, I think successive governments constantly tinkering with this subject they have called literacy have turned reading into schoolwork and a chore rather than a pleasure and something you choose to do at home.

Bags Thu 25-Oct-12 14:53:18

My eldest DD didn't want to "practise" reading her school book when she was that age. Since she enjoyed looking at her own story books and listening to stories we read to her, I didn't force the issue and told the school not to fuss either. Result? By the age of six and a half she was reading whatever she wanted to read, from cereal packets to children's books pitched at her age group.

There is no hurry! And it's quite possible – likely even – that a five uear old is tired after school and wants to just play. Let her, and take the pressure off.

But carry on reading to her so that her enjoyment of books is encouraged.

Stansgran Thu 25-Oct-12 15:02:08

There is a charming series of books about a little girl called Katie who goes to art galleries and the paintings come alive-she might enjoy sharing this(Book People do the whole series for very little)-earlyreading books can be tedious for an imaginative child. Another game is to read alternate words with her as fast as you can and then reread to see if you can do it faster with her reading the the words you read before. Make sure you make mistakes which she can correct you.

Granny23 Thu 25-Oct-12 15:40:38

I am with Elegran on this one DGS (5) always insisted that 'I can't read' when what he meant was that he could not read whole books. So, I made a point of asking him what it said on various products and he discovered he could 'read' all the brand names. Same with street signs, hoardings, TV Adverts. Then we encouraged him to 'read' one word to a page books to his wee sister and when reading a story to him, stopped at familiar words for him to read or got him to pick out certain words in the text. All things which he could do easily so that he gained confidence and all of a sudden he has turned the corner and declares that he can read, just needs help with the odd word.

Elegran Thu 25-Oct-12 15:55:19

Yes, reading is not just practising with the one-size-fits-all reading schemes, it is understanding what it says on packets, leaflets, birthday cards, anything at all with words on.

I once knew a boy of nine whose school reading was hopeless, but he could read everything on the food bags of his grandad's beloved racing pigeons, and could read the timeclock they triggered when they returned home. In fact, he knew more about pigeons than about any other subject.

Mishap Thu 25-Oct-12 16:04:25

Sad that she is being pressured to "practice reading" - much better to read to her - that way she will learn that it is magic and feel motivated.

kittylester Thu 25-Oct-12 16:14:51

My brother really started to enjoy reading when he was about nine and discovered that there were football reports in the paper grin

JessM Thu 25-Oct-12 16:20:16

Reading books are boring! I agree don't push it. Read real world things that are linked to activities.
My GD prefers reading books that are about animal kingdom.

Pud Thu 25-Oct-12 18:17:17

Word games make a change from school reading book. She might like to make her own reading book about pictures she likes and then read it to everyone. She obviously has the ability to read so I would not worry. Being a retired teacher I know school would let you know if there was anything to worry about!

Wheniwasyourage Thu 25-Oct-12 19:14:13

Elegran, your idea about asking the child to read the recipe book for you is a super one. Just what we need to try on our GD who enjoys cooking with Mr when but isn't very keen to read. Thank you!

FlicketyB Thu 25-Oct-12 22:56:07

If your grand daughter is five I assume that she will have gone up from the rising 5, kindergarten class to 'big' school. DGD is also 5 and had to make that move this year. At her school the rising 5s classrooms had their own entrance and small playground and parents met the children at the school door. This term she is at the 'big' school. There is a big playground with all the children from 5 - 11 in it and when school starts they all line up in the playground before going inside. Teaching as well has become more structured. Both she and several of her friends have been having problems adjusting, not wanting to go to school, not wanting to do reading at home etc. Could this be part of your grand daughters problem? I would speak to the teacher, she may not be the only one.

harrigran Thu 25-Oct-12 23:32:57

I ask DGD every week if she would like to bring her reading book and read to me, she develops selective deafness. If she wants favours and wants to please me she will bring her books and sit on my knee. I think they sometimes manipulate us smile

Deedaa Thu 08-Nov-12 21:26:05

I think tiredness can definitely be an issue. My GS does gymnastics once a week and during his first year at school had to go straight after school. Although he really enjoys it it used to be a real nightmare getting him to go. Every week it was "can't I not go today". This year he has moved up to a session that starts an hour later and , with time to go home, have a snack and watch a bit of TV first there is no problem at all. A whole day at school and then having to go straight into more work at home is probably just too much. Back in the stone age when I was at primary school we weren't allowed to take any sort of school work home and I certainly don't remember my mother doing any reading with me ( as opposed to reading to me) On the rare occasions when we had something we wanted to carry on with at home our teacher had to get special permission from the Headmistress.

nanaej Thu 08-Nov-12 22:29:19

Hello.. my 2 pennyworth , for what it's worth, is just read to her for a while. So many lovely books out there so let her choose her favourites. As long as she is enjoying & using books regularly she will get back her enthusiasm for reading for herself. Read environmental stuff with her: street signs, cereal packets, shop names, rues of games, things on TV etc so that she re-establishes confidence in her ability to read.

I agree you should let the school know her reluctance to read her school 'readers' and what you plan to do instead. I agree too that the games / cooking activities etc suggested are a great way for reading to be supported... my DGD (7) loves to play scrabble with me & went through a phase of not wanting to read her school books but spent hours pouring over the atlas or other non fiction. Eventually she got back to her reading books and is currently reading ' The history of underwear' and 'The Secret Garden'!

ladybird9 Mon 18-May-15 19:46:02

regarding the 5 year old "reading", I am a part-time unofficiial Nanny to twin 8 year olds and part of my duties is to listen to them read their school books, the young boy is fine, no big problems with reading to me but, his sister always, always makes a fuss, I have found that if I offer to take turns in reading pages she will cooperate, it is a amicable solution, she looks upon it a "sort of a game" , maybe not for everyone but for me it worked for me. Try it !!!!!!

jeanthompson Fri 26-Jun-15 11:28:31

I think you should enroll her in preschool. In preschool various activities are conducted for growing interest of kids in reading. My daughter is 4 years old and studying in preschool at Various programs and activities are conducted for the development of kids. Interaction with other children will also grow her interest in reading and other activities.

Anya Fri 26-Jun-15 11:46:08

As the OP was in 2012, I would hope she's reading fluently (if not enthusiastically ) by now!'mm

loopylou Fri 26-Jun-15 12:35:45

DS flatly refused to focus on his reading homework at 5 or 6, but DD couldn't read enough, a total bookworm.
We already went regularly to the library but I took them to a bookstore that had a wide range of children's books and let them browse. DS picked up a fantasy book by Terry Prachett and was hooked.
I think sometimes the subject matter just doesn't 'grab' a child, it might be worth trying. DS never was a great 'leisure' reader but did very well at school and university.