Reading Without Tears

My youngest son is finally starting to read. He is one of my later readers, but with the older students doing well in school, it has been easy to feel relaxed about it. However, it is one of my goals for this season to get him reading fluently. Once a student is reading, they can move much more easily into independent learning, as well as being equipped to absorb tons of information naturally as they read.

It is also one of my goals to keep learning an active process as long as that is needed, and to keep learning tear free. Some of my son's work involves writing in a workbook (Explode the Code, Cursive Copywork), so for other reading activities I try to incorporate games as often as possible.

Some of these games I have referred to in other posts, but I made up a few new ones this week..

Word Pick Up- My son had dumped a huge tub of Duplos on the floor. I told him that for every word that he could read, I would pick up a Duplo, for every word that he could not read, he would have to pick up a block. It not only got the toys picked up without tears, but it also got lots of reading done.

Obstacle Phonics-Another afternoon with a messy floor, but this time the floor was covered with stuffed animals and a bin of toys. My son set up the toys as an obstacle hop, and for every phonogram he answered correctly he could take a hop forward. If he missed one, he would have to go backwards. He loved the extra challenge of jumping over his toys, and was happy to take his time about getting through the obstacles.

Mosaic Spelling- I had a pencil outline of a heart, and for every word my son spelled on his little chalkboard, I would glue a scrap of paper inside the heart. I explained to him that when the heart was filled in, he would be done with spelling. This helped him focus enough to pay attention to improving letter formation, and helped him see that there would be an end to the task.

None of these activities took me much time in preparation or clean up. The mosaic activity was a left over art project from our history day, that I really wanted him to do as a record of our day. The other two activities helped get toys picked up, and in every case, the reading, and the activity, accomplished dual purposes. Cleanup, exercise, and crafting, all got done along with the reading.

I can't always make reading fun, but when possible, I will take the time to make school an opportunity to build connection, and show my son how well loved he is.

This post contains affiliate links.


  1. Replies
    1. Thanks for reading Raimie! Have a great weekend.

  2. Love these ideas... I'm beyond the "home school mom age" but, these are great ideas to know & share and to implement with children in my care!!

  3. Hi, these are great ideas. I hope you can link up with us at Literacy Musing Mondays. We love features like this. :)