Learning to Read When English Isn’t First Language

The bond between Warne Dominick and Jose, 7, all started because of reading.

"He confided in me that he was new to the English language as far as reading and he was nervous about it," said Dominick, who is a literacy lead for Reading Partners North Texas. "Immediately my heart melted, and I knew that we were going to work together for the rest of the term."

Dominick volunteers with Reading Partners North Texas. It is a national, literacy nonprofit that goes into select schools across our area. Their mission is to give students an extra boost when it comes to their reading skills, dedicated to getting them reading at or above grade-level.

When Dominick met Jose last school year, Spanish was his first language and he told Dominick his "English was not very good."

"What we do is supplement that with some 45-minute tutoring sessions to really help their confidence and their reading. We saw huge improvements on both of those with Jose," Dominick said.

Dominick said the trick for many kids is to find a subject matter they love. Reading something they are interested in will keep them engaged and make a child more interested in reading this summer.

So how have things been going for Jose?

"He worked hard and at the end of our time, he is actually at a 4th grade reading level," Dominick said.

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