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The Word on Reading

With 40 percent of third and fourth graders lacking proficiency in reading, it’s more than just vowels and consonants at stake. Dr. J. Richard Gentry, author of Raising Confident Readers, says a “lack of support for literacy at home” as well as the elimination of independent spelling instruction in schools have contributed to this staggering statistic. So his book offers parents a way to take the reins, offering fun, level-appropriate early reading activities that can be done at home or on the go.

“Parents have this notion they shouldn’t teach reading, that it’s the teacher’s job,” he says. “But children whose parents read to them end up with a 32-million-word advantage over others.” Gentry toured North Texas recently, noting the importance of the state to his message. The State Board of Education, he says, is currently discussing the role of spelling instruction in the classroom, which will affect your son or daughter.

Find out what you can do to help your little reader by snagging a copy of Gentry’s book.