Teaching my third child to read has been a much longer process than the first two. Every lesson would almost immediately be met with “I’m tired” and “this is exhausting”. We kept plugging away for almost 2 years, and while Isaiah knew all of his phonics rules, he just hadn’t taken off with his reading.
At his 7 year check up, he yet again passed their eye screening just fine. I asked them if they thought I should get his eyes checked. They didn’t think so, but my instincts were telling me that it was time.
Within a minute or two at the eye doctor’s, we knew my sweet boy was far-sighted (meaning he can’t see well up close). Knowing he had a physical reason he couldn’t read helped him to advance in reading even while waiting for the glasses to come.
As I chatted with the eye doctor, he wondered where the far-sightedness had come from since both Seth and I are near-sighted. The eye doctor also said that many kids don’t get help with being far-sighted until they already are “far behind” in their learning or already “feel dumb”.
At this moment, a light bulb came on.
My dad is far-sighted. He didn’t get his first pair of reading glasses until he was 21 and in Bible college. My dad struggled through school and even was held back a grade. He struggled his way through Bible college. Finally, he got a pair of reading glasses. That first day, he went back to his dorm room and was able to read through the book of Acts in one sitting. Before that, he had never understood how others could read large amounts at a time. My dad is a very bright man, and yet a lack of reading glasses had a huge impact on his education and how he viewed himself.
I’m so thankful for my little boy’s glasses. In the short time he’s had them, I have actually seen Isaiah choose to read books on his own, read to anyone who will listen, and even has improved his handwriting.
I wanted to take the time to share this story in case someone else is in the same situation as us. It’s amazing what a pair of glasses can do.
(By the way, Isaiah really wanted me to write about how amazing the Elephant and Piggie books are. He insisted I photograph him with lots of them showing. If your young readers haven’t checked out out Elephant and Piggie from the library, Isaiah says you should because they will love them.)