The Best Online Reading Programme for Struggling Readers
Children learn to read at their own pace, which sometimes makes it hard for parents to know when a child is struggling.
It's estimated that almost 40 per cent of children struggle with reading. But the good news is that with early intervention, most struggling readers do overcome their challenges.
It's extremely important to start intervention as soon as you can—the older a child is, the tougher it will be for them to learn how to read.
Investing in a quality online reading programme can make a dramatic difference in your child's reading ability and confidence, especially if it's designed to support them in the early stages of reading.
If a child can't read well by the end of year three, the odds are stacked against them in terms of ever catching up. This can be a huge blow to their confidence and can affect many areas of their schooling.
If you suspect a problem, don't hesitate to seek help or talk to your child's teacher. There are lots of reasons a child may struggle with reading, and the answers aren't always clear. Read more about learning differences related to autism and dyslexia.
Reading Eggs is independently proven to help struggling readers overcome difficulties in a short period of time. Used by over 10 million children worldwide, the online reading programme is fun, self‑paced, and highly motivating for ages 2 to 13.
Struggling Readers: Signs to Look Out For
There are a few early signs that your child might be struggling with reading. Research has found that the brain of a struggling reader handles reading quite differently than that of a strong reader.
Some children have a learning difficulty that makes it hard for them to learn in a conventional way. Others start school without any reading experiences at all, putting them at a great disadvantage early on. Some children who struggle with reading simply haven't been taught the right way.
Here are some early signs to look out for:
- trouble pronouncing words or expressing how they feel (children who talk late or say few words may struggle with reading)
- trouble telling or retelling a story
- trouble sounding out words
- not understanding words, even when they are able to read them (lacking reading comprehension)
- trouble rhyming words (e.g. not being able to rhyme simple words with 'cat')
- guessing or skipping words
- inability to match words with letters.
Online Reading Programmes are Proven to Help Struggling Readers
Research shows that children see the greatest gains when combining a quality online reading programme that uses explicit phonics instruction (e.g. Reading Eggs) and print resources (e.g. books, worksheets).
These benefits have been observed in children who use Reading Eggs, which encourages them to visualise images when they read and hear language. This is especially effective for some children with autism, helping them to improve reading comprehension and establish new connections between areas of the brain involved in understanding language.
Using online reading programmes like Reading Eggs also breaks up the way your child experiences reading. This can be critical if their confidence is already low and they find reading books frustrating.
Why is Reading Eggs So Effective in Helping Struggling Readers?
Reading Eggs is an online reading intervention programme that's been proven to increase the reading scores of struggling readers.
An independent study carried out over six weeks showed that 93 per cent of students increased their reading proficiency score by at least one whole level after using Reading Eggs.
Reading Eggs is based on solid scientific research to help children with a range of different abilities learn how to read. Most parents (over 91 per cent surveyed) report noticeable improvements in just weeks into using the programme.
The programme is targeted to children aged two to 13 and focuses on building essential literacy skills in a fun, engaging and highly motivating way that rewards children for their progress. The one‑on‑one lessons cover key skills which expressly address the five essential components of reading—phonemic awareness, phonics, fluency, vocabulary and comprehension.
At the start of the programme, children complete a short, interactive placement test that discreetly matches them to the best level for their ability. The programme then progresses at each individual child’s pace, with a structured sequence of interactive lessons and activities.
“Because this 'test' is done through an online game, I find that the results are actually much more accurate than any written, standardised test for my son. When my son completed the assessment, it was clear that he was better able to show what he knows, because he was relaxed and engaged.” – Shawna, Not the Former Things
Here are some of the ways Reading Eggs helps struggling readers:
- starts with a strong focus on building phonemic awareness and phonics—the basis for reading and understanding how language is formed
- explicitly teaches language conventions and spelling rules (proven to benefit children with dyslexia)
- the programme ensures children only move on when they have grasped each lesson
- each lesson explicitly and systematically teaches early reading concepts, while the sequence of lessons builds active reading comprehension skills
- pairs reading with visual accompaniments, which helps children who struggle with verbal instruction or decoding written text
- high‑interest, visual rewards are activated each time a child completes an activity or lesson, boosting motivation and confidence
- the predictable format and patterns in the programme make it easy for children to continue progressing with ease.
Most importantly, the Reading Eggs programme is motivating and fun. For children with reading difficulties, repetition is one of the keys to success, and because Reading Eggs lessons are so enjoyable, children enjoy doing them again and again.
Parents who've used Reading Eggs for their struggling reader say:
“My daughter is in Kindergarten and has really struggled to get a grasp of reading […] She has now finished 30 Reading Eggs lessons and has loved doing them. Yesterday her teacher said to me for the first time that her reading was 'great'. I can't tell you how happy that made me and I think you guys are certainly part of her progress.” – Brenda
“This programme is great. My 5‑year‑old was struggling with learning to read at school. After a couple of weeks on Reading Eggs I can see her progress. With her school readers she was memorising the words, however with Reading Eggs she is actually learning letter‑sound combinations and the experience is fun. Today she said to me, 'I want to use the computer every night before I go to bed. Learning is fun!' Two mornings ago we read four of your little [print] books in bed. It used to be a struggle to read one of her school readers. Thanks again.” – Nicole
“As a busy mum of a child who is struggling to get a handle on the strange world of written English, Reading Eggs is an absolute godsend… The songs make us all laugh. I have two older boys who I can't keep away from the computer when my first grader is on it so I am going to join them up as well!” – Mel
“I just wanted to say a big thank you. My son has been struggling with his reading. He is in Year 1 and nothing seems to hold his interest. By chance we came across your website last night and he couldn't have been more engrossed, [I] had trouble getting him away from the computer. First thing this morning he was ready to go back on the programme again. Thank you, thank you, thank you.” – Emily