My Kid Cannot Read, and It Is Driving Me Nuts


It was my choice to not send ANY of my kids to preschool.

I respect everyone's opinion on the matter, but I feel that kids spend enough time in school and away from home without shoving them out the door at the age of 2 or 3. 

And each time my kids have entered kindergarten, I have questioned this decision because my children are always a little behind in the reading department from many of their classmates.  Despite working with them at home about letters and letter sounds, and buying tons of early reading workbooks, my kids were not able to read in kindergarten. 

Every day, as I sit with my daughter to do her homework, I well up with frustration that she doesn’t seem to be making progress in the reading department.  At least once a week, I ask her teacher if she is doing okay – fearful that she won’t be promoted to 1st grade.  And every time, she tells me that my 5 year old is doing perfectly find and not as behind as I think she is. 

One of the problems is that my daughter doesn’t work well with me.  When it comes to learning, she has adopted the idea that her teachers are far superior to me, and while she won’t always sit still and listen to my lessons – she WILL for her teachers. (Definitely a pet peeve of parenting!)

Being my fourth and last child, I have to remind myself daily – this too shall pass.

Soon enough she will be reading books.  Soon enough she will know all of her sight words

The building blocks are taking shape and her teachers are doing an excellent job at preparing her for 1st grade.  One day, she will read.  SHE WILL LEARN TO READ. 

So why am I being so darn impatient?  Why does it feel like we are treading water?  Why am I so filled with worry and fret that she won’t learn to read? 

One of the reasons is because I feel like this is my fault.  One of my decisions has potentially crippled her progress. 

Maybe if I would have sent her to Pre-K she would be reading The Hunger Games by now. 

Another reason is that her inability to read frustrates her.  When she sees classmates rattle through a book and she can only decipher a few of the words on a page, she FEELS behind.  She feels pressure.  And that pains me a great deal to see her with anything but confidence.  (And again, it is my fault!)

There have to be other parents out there who feel their kids are a little behind the eight ball when it comes to their academics at school. 

The one saving grace I have is knowing that despite the fact that none of my kids have attended school prior to kindergarten each of them has been extremely smart, excelled in school (thus far,) and entered into the gifted programs at their schools.  So maybe, this is all just a matter of time.  A worry that soon I can lay to rest.  

Image via iStock

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My Kid Cannot Read, and It Is Driving Me Nuts

Stef Daniel is the 40ish year old, experienced (meaning crazy already) mother of count ‘em…4 daughters (yes, she takes prayers) who have taught her nearly E.V.E.R.Y.T.H.I.N.G she needs to know about raising kids and staying sane. She hails from a small town in Georgia where she lives with her family in a red tin roofed house (with just ONE bathroom mind you) on a farm - with tons of animals of course. One day, due to her sheer aversion to shoes and her immense lov ... More

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1 comment

  1. Profile photo of Joy Joy says:

    I didn’t send my child to preschool either. But I also chose to homeschool, so the reading thing was even more of a frustration for me. My daughter just wasn’t interested. Every phonics lesson was a struggle. Then toward the end of her 1st grade year something clicked for her and now I can’t get her to stop reading. 🙂
    Just be patient I’ve seen studies that show delayed readers are often the people still reading later in life as opposed to their peers who were pressured into reading early and never developed an enjoyment of it.


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