Friday, April 30, 2010

Ok, I have to share this little guy's success story...struggling reader success!

Last night at baseball, my mom friend pulled me aside and told me a new success her son had.
Again, tears came to my eyes!

During TAKS testing, other grades have to be basically silent for three days, so teachers get creative. Usually one of those days will be deemed a "read in" where kids bring books, pillows, stuffed animals, etc. and read all day.

Now for my boys, that is like THE BEST DAYS OF SCHOOL EVER! But for struggling readers, it is the most boring, tedious, and longest days of the year.

I have been the teacher that has watched those strugglers roll around on the floor, playing with their stuffed animals, only snatching up their books and pretending to read when they see me looking their way.

In my class, I take that as my opportunity and challenge to make that day work for them, to be fun. But it isn't easy!

Now, P, my little friend, had a baseball game the night before the read in, and actually got a pretty nasty injury to the neck from a grounder that popped up and hit him. He was walking around all that night, his mom said, with his head cocked to one side. They tried ice, heat, etc, but it wasn't getting better. So, knowing it was painful, she offered for him to stay home from school the next day.

The past read ins, she told me, he had been resistant to even go to school, knowing it was going to be a hard, long day. So she figured he would hop at the chance to stay home. way! He said "mom, where are Mrs. Forrest's books? I can't stay home, I have the read in tomorrow!" (this is where you make a sound effect of her jaw dropping to the floor)

She said he ran around, got all the books packed, and was adamant about going. She again told him he didn't need to worry and could use the day to rest and heal...she told him they'd let him sleep in and see how it was in the morning.

Again, come morning, he got up, without parental wake up -- and got ready, all books in hand.

She called the teacher to check on him later, and the teacher reported he was happily reading, and wasn't complaining about wanting to come home.

So what's the magic?

MATCHING BOOKS. I found something that connected with him, something he liked...

When you do that, that's when it happens...they fall in love.

Keep working on finding those matches! Email and comment with your child's specifics and let me see how I can help too!

I am P's biggest fan right now.

1 comment:

  1. Do you have any suggestions for a young teen girl? Youth fiction is a minefield.