Reading Development

Risk Factors for Reading Problems

Get the facts on risk factors for reading problems to help put all kids on the path to reading success, right from the start.

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For Parents

Your Young Reader. Our Promise.
Parents can help develop succesful reading and writing in kids.

Involved parents, properly equipped, can provide a bright start for their child. Nemours BrightStart! offers tools, resources, services and training that aim to do just that. Our goals include helping parents understand early literacy development and offering support to parents as they help their child build the necessary skills for reading success.

Preparing your child for future reading success is less about giant leaps and more about the simple things you can do every day — such as fostering a positive learning environment at home, taking time out to read with your child, and keeping an eye out for the warning signs of reading failure.

Warning Signs

For Prekindergarten & Early Elementary

Look for these signs of possible emerging reading problems:

  • difficulty learning letter names and letter sounds
  • problems with rhyming
  • problems separating and blending sounds within words
  • trouble reading simple, high-frequency words (cat, boy, who)
  • trouble with phonics
For Children 8 Years or Older

The following could be warning signs of dyslexia:

  • difficulty with spelling
  • trouble sounding out longer words
  • difficulty completing longer reading and writing assignments
  • slow, labored reading with poor comprehension

Risk Factors for Reading Problems

While reading problems occur across all races, ethnicities, socioeconomic levels, and in all written languages, there are specific risk factors:

  • family history of dyslexia or other learning disabilities
  • low parental reading level
  • preschool language disorder, especially language comprehension disorder
  • attentional, behavioral or emotional problems that affect learning
  • poverty and enrollment at schools with a high poverty rate

Nemours BrightStart! provides educators, parents and health professionals with science-based resources that identify and help young children with early literacy difficulties. This closes the reading readiness gap and prevents a possible future of lifelong reading struggles. Read More »

Nemours BrightStart! is Here to Help You

Reading is one of the most important skills for success in school and life. Children with reading challenges often feel isolated and left behind. As a result, bright and capable kids can lose their confidence and develop a poor self-image. Nemours BrightStart! provides just the help that your young child needs to prepare for reading success.

It’s important to keep in mind that Nemours BrightStart! does not “label” children. We identify those at risk of reading failure and offer early instruction. Nearly all young children receiving Nemours BrightStart! instruction make great progress.

How to Read Aloud to Your Child

One of the easiest ways parents can help their children become better readers is to read with them every day. Reading together will help build important literacy skills and create fun experiences for you and your child. You will be teaching your child without really trying.

Tips to Remember
  • Point to words while reading.
  • While looking through picture books, talk about the picture.
  • Ask your child questions about the things you read.

Download Parenting Tips: Reading to a Child (PDF) »
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