13 answers

1St Grader with Reading Comprehension and Focusing Problems

Hi- My daughter is 6 yrs old almost 7 and always been a quick learner and just a great kid, she exceled through preschool and kindergarten but in this last half of 1st grade she has gone in a downward spiral. She's went from great grades to R's in Reading/phonics and Math..her teacher says she's lacking confidence and not paying attention to directions. She is a good reader but when it comes to testing time she bombs the test. There's more to tell but not enough room to write so I'm wondering if there are any specific computer programs or material that I could use to help her w/reading comprehension and focusing. The more fun the program the better. Thanks for any help!

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NIU has a summer program for kids focused on reading (comprehension and phonics). It meets once a week in the summer, in Wheaton or Lisle. Number is 800-979-9151

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I'm a former elementary teacher (now SAHM) and I tutor a first grader in reading. He was put in the Reading Recovery program at school and has met with me once or twice a week since fall. So, maybe a tutor could help? If you check your local school district website or district office, they often have a list of available tutors in the area. I use the starfall.com website also; it is very interactive and my tutoring student loves it.

2 moms found this helpful

I would highly recommend the online program: Click'N Kids Reading/Phonics. I've used it with several of my children. My just turned 7 yo daughter is currently using it. Difficulty increases as you go from lesson to lesson.

As a parent you can monitor their progress through reports that show their strengths/weaknesses. You are able to reset back to a prior lesson if they struggled with it.

They are taken through phonics, sight words, reading, word blending and more. It is visually appealing as well.

I was able to order/download it through: https://www.homeschoolbuyersco-op.org/index.php?option=co... at a one time (lifetime membership) fee of $29.99.

You can also go directly to the www.ClicknKids.com.


1 mom found this helpful

I would try Audiblox it is comprehensive program for many kinds of issues. Also as 1st grade winds down there is a big jump in how many test children take and that in of itself can be a confidence sapper. Are there other interests that she excels in? If she is good at something outside of schoolo that will help with confidence in school.
There are many items a child could hold in his hand to help them focus like a small mushy ball, bit of beeswax, beads on a bracelet you get the idea. Also there certain kinds of cushion to put on a chair to hekp keep children in them. AS for test taking I would talk to your school social worker and ask what test taking straties the school allows.
Any changes in the home life that could distract her? If you are more worried about a grade so will your child but if you really want your child to learn skills focus more on that.
Remember to be your child's advocate if you think she is doing fine make that be known. Good Luck

www.time4learning.com is a fun internet curriculum that we use for homeschooling but that can be used for tutoring ect. There are alot of great phonics activities and lots of other fun stuff that ehlps with focusing. The best thing is you can try the avtivities first and you only have to go month by month. My son loves this program!! And when my daughters saw how great it was they wanted to do it too. They now argue over who gets to do their school work first.
That's what I call fun work!

I am not sure where you live but I would recommend a visit to Dr. Sypherd- she helped my son tremendously! She is a behavioral- vision dr and specialized in many areas- and helped my son a ton on focusing!

I just recently learned that foods with "color added" (like Red, Yellow and blue added to most candies) change the body chemistry in children and make it difficult for them to sit still and concentrate. My son will be turning 7 in September and the kindergarten teacher thought he was ADHD already, but I met someone who told me what I wrote above and I've been extra careful with his diet (cut out all dairy products too) and he is like a totally different child.
Good luck.

I have taught a in Reading Comprehension for a number of years with our Home School Workshops. There can be a number of different reasons why she is having problems.
She can be a good reading but she is not comprehending what she is reading. One thing you can do at home is when she is done reading a small section of her homework as her some questions about what she just read. Or ask her to explain what she has just read. If she can not answer the questions or explain what she just read. The part of her brain where cognitive skills are processed has a glitch. Computer games are not going to solve that problem. You need to get together with someone at your daughters school and ask them for a referral to a specialist that deals with problems involving cognitive skills because you do not want her to fall behind at such a young age.
Organizing ones thoughts can be a tough thing for some children but a lot of times it is because the child has dyslexia. Have you had her tested for dyslexia? Dyslexia can can be more than just seeing letter backwards. Check out this site. http://www.medicinenet.com/dyslexia/page2.htm#3whatare
Good luck and God Bless,

it sounds like your daughter might need some help with identifying specific test vocabulary so that she understands what directions mean. i would discuss this with her teacher. if she is struggling to understand what to do, she probably gets nervous and feels overwhelmed.
also, i would try to figure out where her issue is in reading - is it truly comprehension, that she can decode, but she's not putting everything together so that she really understands it? if so, there are lots of great resources for helping her learn how to make sense of what she reads. you won't find anything like that for the computer, but a good place to start is thumbing through the text before she reads, looking at the title, and deciding what the text is about first and making some predictions, calling on her previous knowledge of the subject. then, she's starting out with an idea of what it's about and really engaging with the text before she starts. there are some great books that can help you to work with her. my favorite is called reading with meaning.
someone else mentioned this, but it sounds like she could really benefit from reading with you. being read to is also still important for beginning readers.
best of luck and kudos for you to being on top of things now.

Check out Time4Learning. I have subscribed for my 2nd grader, mainly for extra practice. (Similar issues) It is designed for home schooling, but she loves it for extra practice. It isn't expensive, either. Another for reading, but more costly is Clickstart by Scholastic. More expensive, though, but helps with reading. Good luck.

Sorry...didn't see that someone else recommended this already!

My wife and I purchased the Candy 4WAY Phonics Curriculum. It's an ENTIRE phonics curriculum in printable format that you just print as you go and it sells for only $9.97. It's unbelievable! We are teaching the grandkids to read with it. Before we started this curriculum with our oldest grandson, he was missing words here and there and guessing at other words. He knew just enough words to "get by" but he was also low in comprehension. We now believe it was because he really couldn't read every word onthe page. The Candy 4WAY Phonics Curriculum includes 100 daily phonics lessons, readers, flashcards, charts. There's ton of rhyme, the readers are fun. The kids love it. It starts a child as young as 4 and takes them all the way through a 4th grade reading level. Our grandson is now in 6th grade and he can read from college textbooks. His comprehension has soared. Candy 4WAY Phonics is also recommended on Don Potter's educational page. You can find the program at: http://www.candy4wayphonics.com

NIU has a summer program for kids focused on reading (comprehension and phonics). It meets once a week in the summer, in Wheaton or Lisle. Number is 800-979-9151

I am a former elementary school teacher (most recently teaching 1st grade) who has chosen to stay home with my almost 8 month old daughter. Last year, I find the website Starfall.com a great (free) site and my students loved it. You can also join readinga-z.com if you need more books taht are at your child's level...there are tons of books to print on that site. if you need more suggestions, feel free to contact me. Also, where do you live? Have you thought about tutoring over the summer for her so she doesn't lose what she has already learned and also to try to give her a headstart?

You can keep her on the phonics but sit with her and have her do it out loud. Praise her every time she does well, Hugs, smiles, etc. Reading out loud helps enable her to speak in public (classroom). You'll be helpin her more than you can imagine. You can give a little nudge help if she's faultering. If she did it before, she can do it again. Keep up the good work mom.

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