About Reading

Note : This post is in response to my husband’s remark that perhaps I should change the title of this blog to ‘Food and Bread, Our Inspiration’
So here’s something that is NOT on food and bread

My 7 year old is a voracious reader
He reads road signs, he reads advertisements
He reads labels, he reads notices
He reads the news, he reads books
He reads almost anything with words
and he reads my blog more often than his Dad

But Malcolm is not one of those bright sparks who knew his ABCs before learning how to clean after himself
In fact he only learned how to read recently, less than a year ago

For a long time, he was not very keen in learning how to read
I guess having someone read to him every night gave him little incentive to learn how to read by himself

He loved cuddling up and have us read to him before bedtime, a nightly ritual he couldn’t do without
We read him anything and everything
and he is happy just that way

Then we introduced him to comics
He loves them and was often tickled when we read him the stories
On his own, he only flipped through the pages and looked at the pictures

It was not until a trip to his future school late last year (now his current school) to explain to him that that was where his formal education would start that triggered a change in his attitude towards reading

I guess that was when reality set in for him and he realized that he would need to be able to read independently

He started noticing letters and words on road signs and notices
He was thrilled, amazed and excited when he found out that he could actually read them
Very soon he was reading all his comic books and devouring all his old story books that we used to read to him
The result was nothing short of spectacular
It’s like overnight, he learned how to read

On his 7th birthday in April this year, he received a set of Roald Dahl books
The book set sat untouched on the shelf for a while
With some containing more than 200 pages
I guess they were too intimidating for him

During the June holiday he picked up the thinnest one and started reading
There was no turning back after that
Two months later, he finished the entire set
A total of 15 books altogether
Frankly, we were flabbergasted


I am glad we read to him all this while
I am glad we didn’t push him to read when he was not ready
I am glad he realized how fun reading can be

Malcolm’s reading journey reminds me how each and every child is different and will develop at different pace
There are children who can read much earlier and there are those who are still struggling to read at his age now
Unfortunately our education system which is designed to educate the mass seems eager to chisel every rock into the same mould and our society quick to label those who are unable to ‘catch up’

If our children really do ‘fall behind’, perhaps all we need is a mustard seed of faith that they will eventually grow and shine in their own unique way





  1. Joce says:

    Hi Rachel, found your blog whilst browsing. Your post is really an encouragement to me. I’m doing my part in reading to my son, teaching him phonics, etc to help him in his reading journey.

    Sometimes I get anxious when he doesn’t seem that interested. And I start to worry. P1 is not too far off. Then I feel guilty for feeling like that cos I do not want to be a mum who pushes my son too hard.

    So I’m reminded to just do my best and let go! He’ll read when he’s ready 🙂 Thanks for sharing!

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