Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Reading, Writing, and Publishing ~

Tag Archives: Learning To Read

Forcing Kids To Learn To Read . . .


Is it possible a child could be hampered in their cognitive development by urging them, too early, to read?

In the previous post, Were You Forced To Learn Reading Too Early? (which includes links to scientific resources), this was quoted:

“Some [children] are ready at the age of four or five, some not for many more years.”

Even though that post was published last September, I recently had a comment that said:

“’No Child Left Behind’ introduced in the US has exacerbated the issue. Scandinavian children don’t read until 8 or 9, and Waldorf Education pushes age-appropriate reading into grade 2 and 3. The last thing you want to do is kill a child’s passion for reading by force feeding them books and then testing them too early. This is setting them up for failure.”

That statement was made by the parent of two children living in a small mountain town in British Columbia, Canada.

They have a website devoted to early childhood development thoughts and research and recently posted the article, Education System Pushes Kids to Read Too Early, which says:

“As kindergarten has taken on the task of reading, more kids are found who need to repeat kindergarten or a ‘transitional’ first grade classroom. As kids progress through grade school, learning disabilities increase, particularly visual-processing types. The language center in the left hemisphere of the brain won’t form for most kids until they are between seven and nine, and later for boys than girls. When kids are taught to read before this, certain problems arise, particularly in spelling and reading comprehension.”

If you have very young children, have close friends who do, or are intellectually curious, do go read the whole article.

If this sounds like the isolated issue of a few people, check out a Google search for “reading too early”.

Were you forced to read too early?

Are you aware of the extreme variability in when particular children are ready to read?

Do you feel this is an important issue?
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