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Why Some Kids Struggle

A lot of parents wonder, "Why is this so hard for my child?" The answers aren't clear, but scientists have discovered that the brain of a child with reading problems handles reading differently than that of a strong reader.

Some kids have a disability that makes reading difficult to learn. Others come to school without the literacy experiences they need to become readers. Some children struggle because they've received poor or inadequate reading instruction. When these and other risk factors are identified early, though, many children's reading difficulties can be prevented.

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Top Articles

There are certain characteristics of groups and individual children that increase their likelihood of struggling with reading. Find out how to use knowledge of these risk factors to help prevent reading problems for these children.
English language learners are at risk for future reading difficulties for a number of reasons. Here are some factors all teachers of ELLs should know.
Knowing children with a family history of difficulties are more likely to have trouble learning to read means that efforts can be made with these children to prevent difficulties from developing.
Children may struggle with reading for a variety of reasons, including limited experience with books, speech and hearing problems, and poor phonemic awareness.
Hearing is critical to speech and language development, communication, and learning. Children with listening difficulties due to hearing loss or auditory processing problems continue to be an underidentified and underserved population.

Especially for Parents

For almost 40 percent of kids, learning to read is a challenge. So in addition to talking, reading, and writing with their child, families play another important role — being on the lookout for early signs of possible trouble.
Dyslexia is the most common cause of reading, writing and spelling difficulties. This article provides a brief overview list of typical signs of dyslexia in preschool and kindergarten.
When a child is having a language or reading problem, he just may need more time to learn language skills. Some children might have trouble seeing, hearing, or speaking, while others may have a learning disability. If you suspect a problem, it's important to get help quickly.
Healthy hearing is critical to a child's speech and language development, communication, learning, and social development. Children who do not hear well are at an increased risk of becoming struggling readers. Here are some signals that may indicate a hearing problem.
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Maria Salvadore
Maria Salvadore
June 29, 2011
"A book is a gift you can open again and again." — Garrison Keillor