Reply To: My 2nd grader doesn’t finish books he’s reading.

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Devon Frye

This reply was originally posted by user adhdmomma in ADDitude’s now-retired community.

My son was the same way, and still is in 8th grade. He prefers visual reading (graphic novels, magazines, non-fiction books, etc).

However, one of his favorite parts of the school day is a little short session they do each day where a book is read aloud to the class. BUT, only if he likes the book.

So, he enjoys stories, he reads on grade level, but will not read novels to the end. There are several reasons for this:

1) The excitement of a new story of new book wears off, and that excitement was helping him focus on it.

2) He has exceptionally poor visual tracking, so it’s a lot of work to read page after page of nothing but text. He gets lost approximately 5-10 times on EVERY PAGE.

3) It’s a huge struggle for him to sit still and focus that long.

A couple things that have helped a little:

1) A HOWDAhug chair. It was the only thing that every helped him to not writhe around and stand on his head while trying to concentrate on reading. (You can read my review of it and actually see my son sitting in it and reading several years ago in the photo in this article:

2) Bookshare. This is a free service for those with disabilities. It’s ebooks, but you can add read aloud or both read aloud with highlight in sync. This really helped my son, but he’s resistant to it now — I suspect he thinks he’s too old or too capable to need it, sadly.

Most experts will tell you what’s important is that they read, not what they read or even for how long they read each time. Try some additional tools, and let it go. Just taking the pressure off often helps some.

ADDconnect Moderator, Author & Mentor on Parenting ADHD, Mom to teen w/ ADHD, LDs, and autism