You Can Make Me Look At The Words, But You Can’t Make Me Read!

You Can Make Me Look At The Words, But You Can’t Make Me Read!

When you homeschool, teaching those tough bits can be scary.

You worry that your children won’t learn what they need to. You wonder if they will every learn to read.

Parents worry so much about teaching their children to read, but if a child wants to discover the stories in books, they will learn.

You Can Make Me Look At The Words, But You Can't Make Me Read!I really don’t remember much about my childhood, hardly anything at all. But I do remember one moment in time vividly. My younger brother was sitting at the dining table in the afternoon. He had been there a very, very long time.

Through tears of anger, sadness, and frustration, he told my mother, “You Can Make Me Look At The Words, But You Can’t Make Me Read!”

For many reasons, that statement stuck with me.

When my husband and I had children of our own, I decided that I was not going to force my children to read. Not ever. If they wanted to read on their own that would be great. But they would get to choose for themselves when to do it and how.

And so, in the meantime while I waited for them to be old enough to read on their own, I read aloud to them. Lots and lots. Every story I could get my hands on.

My husband and I showed our children how wonderful the stories in those books were instead of telling them to go read them.

That worked for us. Both our children love reading today, although I paid so little mind to their reading abilities.

I can’t tell you exactly when either one first started actually reading on their own. It just happened.

And it happened because they wanted to learn, not because I made them do it.

How did you teach your children to read? Were there tough bits? How did you overcome them?



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  • It was tough waiting for my boy to read, but in the meantime I kept reading to him.. what else does one do? Just read, and try not to stress about it and … IT CAME. WOOT WOOT!

    • Kirsten West

      I think you did exactly the right thing! (and I love how you celebrated it when he started reading!)