How to Help a Child Struggling with Reading Comprehension: Improve Your Child’s Skills and Help Kids Read

Understanding the written word is an essential life skill, but reading can be a challenging journey for many children.

If your child is struggling with reading comprehension, they are not alone. The ability to grasp meaning from the texts they read is just as important as being able to decode the words.

Fortunately, there are supportive steps you can take to help enhance their reading proficiency and boost their confidence.

Image illustrating the theme 'how to help a child struggling with reading comprehension'. The scene features a reading corner in a child's room with colorful books, plush cushions, and educational tools designed to enhance reading comprehension.

Try these tips to help your child develop stronger literacy skills

Make connections and ask questions to improve reading comprehension

One of the most effective ways to aid children in enhancing their reading comprehension is by encouraging them to make connections between the text and their own lives.

Shared experiences, emotions, and personal anecdotes often resonate with what they read, making it more relatable and easier to understand. Leveraging reading comprehension strategies, such as asking targeted questions and encouraging prediction, can strengthen text comprehension skills and transform passive reading into an active learning experience.

Asking targeted questions that start with “who,” “what,” “when,” “where,” “how,” and “why” not only probes deeper engagement with the material but also aligns with proven reading comprehension process techniques.

Encourage them to predict outcomes and explain their reasoning by referencing parts of the text. Building on the strategy of prediction helps children to anticipate and infer possible narratives or information, which is crucial for reading comprehension.

Additionally, talking about what they read might just ignite stimulating conversations. Discuss the events of a story or the facts in an article. Utilize inference as a way to discuss implied meanings and lessons learned from the text, further enhancing comprehension and critical thinking.

Try creative exercises like the Rose, Thorn, and Bud technique to discuss good points, challenges, and future events within a narrative context. These discussions don’t only occur after reading—have students record their predictions and chat about anticipated events in the book to build excitement and context.

By integrating these strategies into your reading routine, the pages come alive, and your child’s engagement and understanding can soar. Using reading comprehension strategies consistently can help students at any level to improve their understanding, boost retention, and create connections to the material, laying the foundation for lifelong learning and text comprehension skills.

For further strategies and support tailored specifically for children who face difficulties, check out our article on how to help a child struggling with reading.

Classroom setup filled with colorful workbooks and book sets designed to improve children's reading comprehension skills. The scene includes shelves with educational materials, a cozy reading area with plush cushions, and interactive learning tools

Workbooks and book sets to boost reading comprehension skills for children

Phonics sets to help kids read better and overcome reading struggles

Phonics sets are a godsend for children facing reading difficulties. They are systematic and fun, breaking down complex words into manageable chunks. By enhancing fluency skills, phonics sets play an essential role in helping children progress from decoding words to reading sentences with ease.

With phonemic awareness being a core skill in early reading development, these tools focus on the sounds of letters and letter combinations, which is crucial for children to bridge the gap between recognizing letters and understanding their uses in words.

The best phonics sets reinforce spelling skills and promote the development of a rich vocabulary, essential components for reading proficiency. They have captivating illustrations and interactive components that keep kids interested.

Before you know it, your little ones may start recognizing patterns and applying phonics rules without even realizing it. Reinforcement through repetition, as in rereading, can be particularly effective in improving reading fluency. Here are a couple of examples worth considering:

  • An illustrated phonics workbook that includes engaging activities and stickers to reward progress, which also reinforces spelling skills.
  • A colorful set of flashcards featuring common sight words, blending skills, and phonetic exercises for day-to-day practice can significantly boost word recognition and vocabulary skills.

When choosing resources like these, look for sets that include:

  1. A range of activities that cater to different learning styles, thus enhancing fluency.
  2. Interactive and multisensory approaches to help with retention and build comprehensive vocabulary skills.
  3. Clear instructions and simple progressions from easy to more challenging concepts, important for steadily improving spelling skills.
  4. Visual aids that complement the phonics lessons to enhance understanding and aid in developing fluency.
  5. Engaging themes or characters that keep the child interested and motivated, which is key for maintaining progress in fluency skills.

By incorporating phonics sets into your child’s learning routine, they can improve their decoding skills, build a stronger foundation in reading, and ultimately, overcome their reading struggles. These sets can be a valuable asset in enhancing your child’s fluency skills, which are fundamental for reading comprehension and enjoying literature.

Phonics sets are indeed a blessing for fostering literacy, enriching a child’s vocabulary skills, and bolstering their confidence in their spelling skills, making them an indispensable tool for any young reader’s educational journey.

FAQ: Helping Children with Reading Comprehension

What are effective ways to engage my child who finds reading challenging?

To engage a child who finds reading challenging, try blending learning with play.

Educational games and apps, like the prodigy english reading comprehension app, specifically designed for literacy can make reading fun and interactive. Dramatic play around stories or incorporating multimedia elements like audiobooks and video summaries can also spark interest. To enhance language comprehension, integrate hands-on activities that teach vocabulary in context and use visual aids for visualization.

In addition, provide a variety of book genres to find topics that captivate your child’s imagination and match their interests. Meeting them where they are and gradually increasing difficulty as their skills improve, using tools to improve reading comprehension, can make reading feel more accessible and enjoyable.


How can I measure the improvement in my child’s reading comprehension?

Measuring your child’s reading comprehension can be done through informal and formal methods. Keep an eye on their ability to summarize what they’ve read in their own words and their eagerness to discuss stories and concepts.

To gauge vocabulary knowledge, encourage your child to maintain a vocabulary list – a clear sign of their growing lexicon. You might also look for an increase in their use of vocabulary words during conversations.

For a more structured approach, consider utilizing progress reports from school or standardized tests, which often reflect the improvement in the understanding of various texts and vocabulary. Regular check-ins with teachers can also give insight into their comprehension levels and improvements over time, including updates on how well they’re integrating new vocabulary words and concepts into their verbal and written expressions.

Teach them to use context clues, enhancing their ability to make model predictions about word meaning and overall comprehension.


What should I do if conventional methods fail to help my child’s reading difficulties?

If conventional methods aren’t aiding your child’s reading comprehension problems, it’s crucial to consider a personalized approach, especially for children who might have underlying grammar difficulties.

Seeking assistance from educational professionals, such as reading specialists or tutors trained in systematic, multisensory approaches like Orton-Gillingham, can provide tailored reading comprehension strategies that align with their academic needs. Sometimes, a personalized strategy is required, particularly for children with dyslexia or other learning differences. Additionally, explore assistive technology options designed to support reading, like text-to-speech programs, which can be invaluable for improving grammar comprehension as well.

Remember, early intervention is key, so don’t hesitate to reach out for help if you notice persistent struggles in your child’s ability to understand and retain information from their reading.


Improving reading comprehension for a child struggling with literacy is a journey filled with both challenges and triumphs.

Remember, every child learns at their own pace and in their own way. Embrace patience and keep trying different strategies to discover what resonates with your young reader. Celebrate each small victory and foster a nurturing environment where reading is seen as an enjoyable, lifelong adventure.

Encourage their efforts, provide consistent support, and never underestimate the power of reading together. With time, dedication, and the right resources, watch your child’s confidence and skills grow, unlocking the magic of the written word.

Keep in mind that your involvement and encouragement are pivotal in this process, and you’re laying down the foundation for their future success.