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Simple Solutions to Many Reading Problems

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The first question I always ask struggling readers is: Where do you read?

Almost always, the answer is: I read in my bedroom. 

Aha!!…now for Question #2:

When do you read? 

I read at night, when I’m done with all my other homework and I’m about to go to sleep.


Although reading before bedtime is a wonderful habit and a great component of good sleep hygiene, reading for school needs to be treated like any other homework assignment:

  • Read during the day, when your mind is most awake and alert.
  • Read at a table, with good lighting.
  • Don’t read in your bedroom. Your brain will become too relaxed, plus it’s too easy to become distracted and let your mind wander.
  • Better reading locations are the kitchen counter, the dining room table, a quiet coffee shop or the public library.
  • Sit up straight in a chair (no lying on the sofa or floor). You’re not supposed to get too comfortable!
  • Try standing while reading; it may help you stay alert.
  • Take notes, annotate, or use Post-It notes to mark important points, observations, parts that confuse you, unknown words, etc. This will keep you thinking, absorbing, making connections…learning!


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Photo by pedrosimoes7

Simple Solutions to Many Reading Problems

Leigh Pretnar Cousins, MS

Leigh Pretnar Cousins, MS is an educator, counselor, writer and speaker. She's been a tutor, test prep coach and home school teacher for over thirty years. Click HERE to visit Leigh's website and to subscribe to her newsletter, "Learning Something New."

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APA Reference
Cousins, L. (2015). Simple Solutions to Many Reading Problems. Psych Central. Retrieved on February 27, 2020, from


Last updated: 15 Oct 2015
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