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Twelve-Year-Old Can't Read

Homeschooling Expert Advice from Isabel Shaw

Q: I have been homeschooling my 12-year-old son. He has been having a terrible time with reading. He can't seem to remember the sounds the letters make. If we do phonics cards he seems to do okay, but when they are in word form he struggles. I have tried using word cards, but he still has trouble. I know he gets embarrassed around his friends because he can't read. What am I doing wrong?

A: I don't think you're doing anything wrong. You just haven't discovered the most effective method for helping your son achieve reading fluency. I am a firm believer in allowing children to develop at their own pace, especially with reading. However, by the time a child is 12-years-old, he should be able to recognize letter sounds. I suggest you have your son evaluated by a trained professional to determine how you can help him succeed. A consultation with a reading specialist (you can find a reading specialist in the phone book) is the best place to start.

For additional helpful suggestions, read Helping Your Homeschooler Learn to Read.

Good luck!

More on: Expert Advice

Isabel Shaw is a freelance writer and homeschooling mom of 15 years. She and her husband Ray homeschool their two daughters, Jessica and Amanda. Besides being a contributor to FamilyEducation.com, Shaw has written for Home Education Magazine, The Link, Homeschooling Horizons Magazine, The Homeschool Gazette, and other publications.


Please note: This "Expert Advice" area of FamilyEducation.com should be used for general information purposes only. Advice given here is not intended to provide a basis for action in particular circumstances without consideration by a competent professional. Before using this Expert Advice area, please review our General and Medical Disclaimers.

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