Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The Lies They Tell #1

You are going to hear all kinds of lies throughout your parenting journey. The people telling you these lies are not liars per se. They are usually well intentioned human beings who genuinely have the best interest of your child in mind, but they lie just the same. They sometimes don't even realize they are lying. They are simply passing along lies that they were told or heard at a conference or in-service. Among the most blatant and common lie is:

"If your child has not mastered reading by the time he is (insert random age here) he will be behind his peers and will probably never catch up!"

Don't you believe this for one minute! You are a good parent and deep down in your heart you know better. You know that children develop at different rates. That they have different interests and different skills at any age. If you child is not reading by age 5, 6 or 9, but you are reading to them, exposing them to books, exposing them to language, your child will read at some point barring any severe retardation and even then I would be hesitant to say that the child will never read. Blind children, deaf children, children with down syndrome learn to read, why wouldn't your child? Helen Keller learn to read. Frederick Douglass was born a slave and he, like many slaves, learned to read. My father's cousin was illiterate until the age of 10, he went on to become one of the top orthopedic surgeons in his country. My own father arrived in the United States at the age of 39, with a sixth grade education. He learned to read, write and speak English. These are just a few examples, but history is rife with many more. So if your child can't read at six, don't fret and don't, not for one minute, believe that your child will never catch up, of course he will.