BeeOasis Step 3
Dan Hurley is an author. He writes best-selling books about science, and he writes popular stories for the world’s most prestigious newspapers and magazines, including the New York Times, the Washington Post, and Wired Magazine. In a word, he is a big success.
But when Dan was eight years old, he could not read. He tells a story about when he was a little boy in school. One day, Dan’s teacher asked him to read a few sentences from an easy book. She pointed to a word and said, “Read this.” Dan stared hard at the book while his teacher watched him anxiously. He couldn’t even say the word “the.”
This was not good. It was an unmistakable sign that Dan had a learning problem. When Dan’s mother met with his teacher, she heard disappointing words that no parent wants to hear: “Daniel is a slow learner.”
Many parents agonize about this problem. They say, “Our daughter is a poor reader. She reads slowly and has trouble sounding out the words. She often cannot recall what she has read.”
This is a serious problem because early success with reading is vital. If a child learns to read early, this leads to more and more reading success. But if a child can’t read by the fourth grade, she will likely fail to keep pace in every area of learning.
What should a parent or teacher do when this happens? Dan Hurley was lucky. A superhero came to his rescue. Really! Spiderman intervened and used his super powers to help Dan. And so it was at age nine that Dan began to read comic books. And soon after that, he began writing his own stories with his friends.
Many children may not be so lucky to get assistance from Spiderman. But parents can meet with teachers and reading specialists, and they can endeavor to understand the problem. There are many ways to respond to this problem. But in general, it’s good to read aloud every day with a child. When Parents read stories playfully with their children, it helps to make reading enjoyable and engaging for them.
Three years after Dan met Spiderman, he was a top student. He changed, and he became smarter. Dan was a slow learner as a child, but today he is a prominent and successful writer. How did he move from “slow learner” to “smart enough to write best-selling books”?