During my years working as a reading specialist, many parents of struggling readers have confessed that working with their children in the area of literacy is daunting and frustrating.  They do not know where to begin.  They ask: What materials are high quality?  How do I use the materials effectively?  What is the “language of teaching literacy?”

The goal of this blog is to provide parents of struggling readers with 1) an understanding of literacy development, 2) suggest appropriate, high quality instructional resources and 3) teach parents how to use them.  I hope to make parents feel competent and supported when teaching their children how to read.

In my own private practice, I work with young, struggling readers.  If parents are interested, I provide them with the resources and guidance to work with their children at home.  In every instance, when parents have worked with their children at home, they have felt that their effort was worthwhile.  The comment I have heard time and time again is “I didn’t know that I had the capacity to positively affect my child’s literacy growth at home.”

This blog is geared for parents of children in grades kindergarten through second grade.  I am focusing on this age spectrum because if in fact there is a delay in your child’s literacy development, he or she is not that far behind.  Your child can catch up.  He will need strong, informed literacy instruction in order to progress.  You, the parent, along with his classroom teacher, tutor, resource room teacher, etc. are part of the equation!

I am also targeting this age group of struggling readers because the likelihood of your child’s long-term academic success hinges greatly on his ability to read at grade-level by third grade. The Double Jeopardy: How Third Grade Reading Skills and Poverty Influence High School Graduation study demonstrates that children who are NOT reading on grade-level by third grade are FOUR TIMES as likely to drop out of school.  Felton and Pepper (1995) found that students with poor word-identification skills in third grade rarely improve these skills by eighth grade.

* Poor word-identification skills simply mean the child cannot read words in isolation well.  Words can be phonetically-regular such as black or missing or can be phonetically-irregular such as from or said.

Reading well is essential to your child’s academic success.  Tutoring Parents aims to create a educational and collaborative forum where parents can learn to support their children’s literacy development.

Felton, R. H., & Pepper, P. P. (1995). Early identification and intervention of phonological deficits in kindergarten and early elementary children at risk for reading disability. School Psychology Review, 24, 405-414.