Lost for words – children’s reading week – October 22nd

October 22nd sees the beginning of children’s reading season on Channel 4 – a season dedicated to encouraging and supporting reading in children.  This is an important initiative as one survey carried out for Granada TV last year revealed that 40% of parents admitted that they had never read to their child.  The desire to read and developing “readiness” in terms of hearing the rhythms of speech embedded in story telling, begins with being read to as a small child.  One study found that early reading experience and an extensive vocabulary is associated with delayed cognitive decline in old age.

Other children have a desire to read  but are “lost with words” because they lack the eye movements necessary to visually scan along a line of print, the ability to decode letters into sounds or  hear the individual sounds within words, which is necessary to word build using phonics. In many cases these problems can be identified and corrected using specific exercise programmes to improve control of eye movements and/or listening programmes to improve auditory discrimination.  For further information of these programmes see www.inpp.org.uk/learningdifficulties.

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