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- Daniel Morris
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Facing the Tyranny of Time

From K to three you learn to read, from grade four and for the rest of your life you read to learn. What if you miss the window?

 

Most of our school systems are set up in a certain way. They assume that by the time a child reaches grade four, he or she will not only know how to read, but will be proficient enough to be able to read in order to learn.  For a large portion of school age children, this is simply not the case.

Missing the window does not mean there is anything wrong with the child, it simply means that the school system failed to teach the child to read properly and read effectively.  For those children who do miss the window, they often face the tyranny of time. 

As time passes the gap between their skill level in reading and those of their peers becomes increasingly wider. A student who is lacking in proficient reading skills will find it difficult to function within the confines of a regular classroom. As more classroom instructions are given in print, it becomes increasingly difficult for those children who have missed the window to follow what’s going on within the lessons.   If assignments are not being completed at school, homework begins to pile up and frustrations begin to take their toll on the whole family. School eventually becomes a place that is associated with negative feelings and a negative outcome is the result.

Children outgrow shoes, clothes and when they’re young even their teeth –children almost never outgrow a reading difficulty.  If children struggle in grades one and two, they may still have the inner drive that tells them next year will be better. If reading difficulties are not corrected before the end of grade three their spirit begins to break and their self belief of being a capable learner begins to fade.

It is therefore, vital that parents keep a close eye on what is going on with their child’s progress at school.  A family may have more than one child, but teachers will have a great deal more to keep track of, so it is the parent that must make sure their child has not missed the window.

Research shows that early one on one remediation, which focuses on phonological awareness and perception of speech, is fast and effective. It will usually allow a child to get back on track with their peers in the shortest amount of time.

At Beacon, we give parents the opportunity to keep a close eye on their children’s reading skills by providing free, no obligation reading assessments.