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Is your child unwilling to learn? Are you exhausted with trying to find new and exciting ways to engage them? Here are 5 tips for supporting a reluctant learner:

1) Get into good routines. Choose a time in the day to do homework tasks and make sure you give these tasks a definite start and end point. The space you work in is important too, preferably somewhere that is distraction free.

Remember your job as a parent is to coach and support. So if your child is really struggling with something, you’d be better off slipping a note for the teacher into their school book than staying up all night to get it done with everyone feeling exhausted and unhappy.

On the Easyread course the primary focus is on daily 15 minute lessons of decoding practice. The strict time-frame is what allows a child to feel as excited and engaged on day 1 as they do on day 100.

2) Use the computer. The interactive and multi-sensory nature of technology can be a fantastic way to motivate a child who is reluctant to learn.

When working through the Easyread System, the fun games that make up each computer-based lesson are massively appealing to children who struggle to focus in a conventional classroom environment.

3) Take an interest. Setting an example for your child to follow is very important. After all, if you have no interest in learning something new, why should they? It could be as simple as baking a cake together from a recipe or watching the film adaptation of a well-loved book.

At Easyread, we feel there is no such thing as too much help. A parent and child should be working together as a team through the lessons, sharing in the success they find every day.

4) Catch your child being good. Pointing out the good in what your child is doing rather than chastising them for the bad sounds obvious. But you’d be amazed how, even with the best intentions, we often find ourselves focusing on the negative.

Our principle at Easyread is to make 5 positive comments for every 1 negative. It could even be as simple as “you’re taking such care with this” or “I love that you’re taking such an interest here”.

5) Keep things in perspective. There is no doubt that learning and education are critical for a child, but don’t forget there’s other stuff too! Your child is more than their academic side. Ballet lessons; scouts; family days out; these are all important too.

At regular intervals throughout the Easyread program, the child is sent prizes that fit with a spy theme-whether it is digital binoculars, specialised spy-glasses or a remote-controlled helicopter! By providing them with a valuable reward, their sense of purpose and imaginative involvement with the project is dramatically enhanced.

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Laura O’Sullivan is a Program Coach at the Easyread System, an online phonics course for children with dyslexia, auditory processing disorder and highly visual learning styles. Easyread helps provide struggling learners with support for spelling and reading problems. Find out more at