Do I have to Read?

I’ve spent a lifetime encouraging boys to read. Sometimes it’s a tough go. There can be eye-tracking problems, dyslexia, lack of practice, or often reading is just too slow of an activity for them in this fast paced world. I’m far from being an expert about what to do with reluctant readers. I would have written a self help book long ago if there was an easy answer. What I do know is if you can rule out eye problems then you just have to keep pushing them into reading.

Some of my favorite responses when asking a reluctant reader to spend time with a book:

Nah, I’m not feeling it.

Could we do this some other time?

How many pages?

What did I do wrong?

I’m not feeling very good.

I’ll go clean my room instead.

If I read for 10 minutes can I play video games the rest of the day?

Alec’s mom doesn’t make him read.

Books are boring.

If  books don’t provide the hook, then start them out by reading recipes (yes, they are interested in how you make chocolate ice cream), video game synopsis (find some here), comic books/graphic novels, road signs on family trips/rides in the car, or short bios of their favorite sports star. Try something completely opposite like speed-reading. It becomes more of a game for them. Free sites like Spreeder or Interlink can get them started

It may take a few years to instill the love of reading into the active mind of your little one. Eventually they will thank you for your efforts… well, maybe just a smile. HENDERSMILEMedium

About Greg Pattridge

Climbing another mountain...writing middle grade novels.
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