Do you teach children or adolescents who are reluctant to read?

Two variables are crucial to motivation:

  1. Whether we expect to be successful
  2. Whether we place value on successfully accomplishing the activity.

The challenge is to create a classroom environment in which your deaf students are continually successful so that they learn to expect success, and in which your students come to value reading because it meets their needs and satisfied their interests.

The first step in figuring out why your students are reluctant readers is to find out how they feel about reading. What are their attitudes and interests? One way to assess deaf children’s attitudes and interests is to observe them, during literacy activities and during free time. While you’re observing, ask yourself the following questions.

Does the child:

Is the child:

Another way to assess attitudes and interests toward reading is with a questionnaire or survey. The following open-ended questions are one type of questionnaire.

  1. I think reading.
  2. My favorite place to read is.
  3. When my mom or dad reads to me.
  4. When my teacher reads to me.
  5. My parents read because.
  6. My favorite kind of reading is.
  7. I’d rather read than.
  8. The reasons that people read are.
  9. The reason that I read is.
  10. The hardest thing about reading is.
  11. The easiest thing about reading is.
  12. If I got a book for a present, I would.
  13. My friends think that reading is.
  14. When I’m grown-up.
  15. If I were the teacher, I would teach reading by.

Barbara R. Schirmer, Ed.D.
Kent State University


Uploaded By: Debbie Slyh/Kent State University/Deaf Education Major