Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Recent Reading and Writing

I noted recently that N. isn't particularly interested in reading books independently or aloud. This might be due to lack of confidence or his impatience with the slower pace at which he reads (in contrast to our reading to him).  I think he also experiences reading as social rather than solitary, something we do together as parent and child or as a family (even though I have assured him numerous times that we will not stop reading aloud together once he is reading independently); like the Victorian families devoted to their reading circles, for N. reading is shared.  It takes all my patience to trust that he will come to enjoy reading independently because he can actually read very well now and he absolutely loves books.  I am just waiting for that moment when his own reading takes off, when he finally gets how exciting it is to be able to read for himself.

Tim has been working on developing N.'s confidence by asking N. to read a book aloud to him every few days; N. seems to enjoy doing this but has not yet taken the initiative to do so on his own.  To build his sense of pride in his reading (and to practice writing), Tim has asked N. to write a note like this when he's read a book.

It's easy to fixate on reading because it seems like such a clear measure of a student's academic achievement and as homeschooling parents we want to demonstrate that we are educating our child effectively.  I try to remind myself that many conventional schools push early literacy yet graduate students who don't love books.  I am proud of my son's passion for books and I think there is a lot to be gained from a social model of reading together.  Because we read together, our conversations as a family are saturated in books, stories, and reading, which has a great impact on the depth of N.'s comprehension and engagement.  Nonetheless, I do look forward to N.'s launch as an independent reader.