Should My Second Grader Be Reading Well?

In most cases, a child should be able to read relatively well by the time that he is a second grader. During first grade, reading is perhaps the most important educational objective that teachers and schools focus on. Now, this doesn’t mean that your second grader will be able to read lengthy novels, or that he won’t struggle with things like chapter books. There will still be words that he cannot sound out, and words that he won’t recognize. On balance, however, a second grader should be reading, at least at a remedial level.

During both first and second grade, much of the educational activities are centered around reading. Children will often read in small groups or with a partner. In some cases, they may have a teacher or another educator, such as a literacy specialist, read to them as well. By the time that a child is a second grader, he should be able to know that there are different purposes for reading. For example, sometimes a second grader will read for pleasure. At other times, a second grader will be asked to read and follow a set of directions. Still other sorts of reading are geared toward learning and education.

Your second grader will begin to be able to read with inflection in her voice. She may also use different voices for the different characters in a story. She should be making good transitions at the end of sentences, and be able to read with the punctuation in mind by the time that she is ending second grade. Your second grader will also continue to expand her reading vocabulary. She will very likely have spelling tests, as well as work with high frequency words.

If you are concerned that your second grader is not reading well enough, there are usually several places that you can seek help. Your child’s teacher is a great person to start with. In some cases, your school or school district may have a literacy specialist that can help your second grader who is struggling. A reading tutor may also be a useful resource.


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